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Comparing Russell Wilson’s 2020 campaign to those…

3 min read
Comparing Russell Wilson’s 2020 campaign to those...


There is no doubt that Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has put together one of the best five-game starts to a season in recent memory. In addition to having led the team to a 5-0 record for the first time in franchise history, he has also won two NFC Offensive Player of the Week awards for his performances against the Falcons (Week 1) and the Cowboys (Week 3).

Many football fans and writers across the country are of the opinion that 2020 could – and should – be the year in which Wilson finally wins the NFL MVP award, despite never having received a single vote throughout his entire professional career.

Some MVP winners start out the season blazing hot, others less so. I was curious about how recent NFL MVPs performed in the first five games of their respective award-winning campaigns, and if Wilson’s 2020 start matches up to those particular stretches of football. With the exception of RB Adrian Peterson (2012), all of the MVP winners of the past 10 years have been quarterbacks.

I assigned a universal point system to those QBs’ stats through their first five games in each MVP season, so that each player would be evaluated on the same scale:

  • Wins: 50 points each
  • Completion %: 1 point per percentage point
  • Touchdowns: 6 points each
  • Interceptions: -3 points each
  • Sacks: -0.5 points each
  • Passing yards: 0.1 point per yard
  • Rushing yards: 0.1 point per yard

If we order these five-game slates by point total, the list looks like this:

  1. Peyton Manning, 2013 (633.2 points)
  2. Russell Wilson, 2020 (585.8 points)
  3. Aaron Rodgers, 2011 (583.5 points)
  4. Patrick Mahomes, 2018 (558.5 points)
  5. Matt Ryan, 2016 (508.5 points)
  6. Cam Newton, 2015 (484.7 points)
  7. Tom Brady, 2017 (445.6 points)
  8. Tom Brady, 2010 (433.1 points)
  9. Lamar Jackson, 2019 (422.8 points)
  10. Aaron Rodgers, 2014 (398.8 points)

Of course, stats from the first five games aren’t everything – Jackson, for instance, did not lose another regular-season game in 2019 after Week 4. Nevertheless, Wilson’s second-place finish on this list emphasizes the historic nature of his 2020 start.

To diehard football fans and to all Seahawks fans, Wilson’s numbers only provide further evidence to support what those people have known for a very long time: Wilson’s name belongs in the list of the greatest quarterbacks of this century.

As for the rest of the fans who may not be aware of how dominant Wilson has been . . . it’s time to start paying attention.

That being said, here’s how the Russell Wilson’s first five games of 2020 stack up against the quarterback MVPs from 2010 to 2019.

(AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)

Record: 5-0 (250 points)

CMP %: 72.8 (72.8 points)

PASS YDS: 1,502 (150.2 points)

RUSH YDS: 153 (15.3 points)

PASS TD: 19 (114 points)

RUSH TD: 0 (0 points)

INT: 3 (-9 points)

SACK: 15 (-7.5 points)

Total Points: 585.8

(Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 3-2 (150 points)

CMP %: 65.4 (65.4 points)

PASS YDS: 1,271 (127.1 points)

RUSH YDS: 308 (30.8 points)

PASS TD: 11 (66 points)

RUSH TD: 1 (6 points)

INT: 5 (-15 points)

SACK: 15 (-7.5 points)

Total Points: 422.8

(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Record: 5-0 (250 points)

CMP %: 63.6 (63.6 points)

PASS YDS: 1,513 (151.3 points)

RUSH YDS: 66 (6.6 points)

PASS TD: 14 (84 points)

RUSH TD: 2 (12 points)

INT: 2 (-6 points)

SACK: 6 (-3 points)

Total Points: 558.5

(Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 3-2 (150 points)

CMP %: 68.2 (68.2 points)

PASS YDS: 1,702 (170.2 points)

RUSH YDS: 22 (2.2 points)

PASS TD: 11 (66 points)

RUSH TD: 0 (0 points)

INT: 1 (-3 points)

SACK: 16 (-8 points)

Total Points: 445.6

(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 4-1 (200 points)

CMP %: 69.0 (69 points)

PASS YDS: 1,740 (174.0)

RUSH YDS: 50 (5 points)

PASS TD: 12 (72 points)

RUSH TD: 0 (0 points)

INT: 2 (-6 points)

SACK: 11 (-5.5 points)

Total Points: 508.5

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 5-0 (250 points)

COMP %: 55.4 (55.4 points)

PASS YDS: 1,078 (107.8 points)

RUSH YDS: 225 (22.5 points)

PASS TD: 8 (48 points)

RUSH TD: 3 (18 points)

INT: 4 (-12 points)

SACK: 10 (-5 points)

Total Points: 484.7

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

Record: 3-2 (150 points)

CMP %: 66.7 (66.7 points)

PASS YDS: 1,155 (115.5 points)

RUSH YDS: 36 (3.6 points)

PASS TD: 12 (72 points)

RUSH TD: 0 (0 points)

INT: 1 (-3 points)

SACK: 12 (-6 points)

Total Points: 398.8

(Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 5-0 (250 points)

CMP %: 75.8 (75.8 points)

PASS YDS: 1,884 (188.4 points)

RUSH YDS: -15 (-1.5 points)

PASS TD: 20 (120 points)

RUSH TD: 1 (6 points)

INT: 1 (-3 points)

SACK: 5 (-2.5 points)

Total Points: 633.2

 

(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Record: 5-0 (250 points)

CMP %: 71.7 (71.7 points)

PASS YDS: 1,721 (172.1 points)

RUSH YDS: 52 (5.2 points)

PASS TD: 14 (84 points)

RUSH TD: 2 (12 points)

INT: 2 (-6 points)

SACK: 11 (-5.5 points)

Total Points: 583.5

 

(Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Record: 4-1 (200 points)

CMP %: 67.5 (67.5 points)

PASS YDS: 1,203 (120.3 points)

RUSH YDS: 13 (1.3 points)

PASS TD: 10 (60 points)

RUSH TD: 0 (0 points)

INT: 4 (-12)

SACK: 8 (-4 points)

Total Points: 433.1

Comparing Russell Wilson’s 2020 campaign to recent MVP QBs



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