It’s not quite the quarter mark of the 17-game NFL regular season but certain trajectories are clearly being established four games into the campaign.
Among those trends — which you can take advantage of using NFL betting promos — are the contenders for individual honors, especially Most Valuable Player. At this point, it’s worth taking a look a look at how the preseason projections are playing out through the lens of wagering odds, and where the surprises have occurred so far.
Back on Sept. 1, the shortest odds for the NFL’s MVP was no surprise — Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes at +600, according to Sports Betting Dime, which uses an average of odds from sportsbooks. And four games into the NFL season, Mahomes is still among the pack leaders at +500 at legal online sportsbooks to win the MVP Award.
However, Mahomes isn’t the odds leader at the moment. That distinction goes to Buffalo QB Josh Allen who is +325 after having started the season at +775. His recent rise is certainly due to a 320-yard, four passing-TD performance last Sunday in a win over Miami.
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NFL MVP Odds
Josh Allen, Buffalo
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City
Tua Tagavailoa, Miami
Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia
Lamar Jackson, Baltimore
Christian McCaffrey, San Francisco
Justin Herbert, L.A. Chargers
Brock Purdy, San Francisco
Odds provided by BetMGM Sportsbook.
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Tagovailoa Biggest Mover in MVP Race
But the biggest mover upward challenging both Allen and Mahomes is Miami quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who leads the league with 1,306 passing yards, so far. Back on Sept. 1, Tagovailoa was +1900 to be the MVP at mobile sports betting apps. After a torrid start that includes leading the 70-point offensive explosion against Denver in Week 3, Tagovailoa is +500 at BetMGM, tied with Mahomes.
Another sharp upward mover is San Francisco QB Brock Purdy, who is still undefeated as a starting quarterback in the regular season. Purdy has the 49ers off to a 4-0 start and currently is +1800 at BetMGM to win the MVP after starting the campaign at +4000.
Along with the upward movers, there’s the other side of life in the NFL, players whose early-season expectations have failed to be met, so far.
One of the biggest disappointments has been Chicago QB Justin Fields. Fields isn’t the sole reason the Bears are 0-4 but he’s getting a lot of the criticism. On Sept. 1, Fields was a modest +2000 to win the MVP but after the four losses, his odds have ballooned to +15000. Cincinnati quarterback Joe Burrow was a darling of oddsmakers early in the season, and perhaps he’ll shake the struggles that accompanied a preseason calf injury, but he’s currently +8000 to win the MVP after being among the favorites at +725 back on Sept. 1.
At BetMGM in the MVP odds, the Eagles’ Hurts has the highest percentage (15.0%), the highest handle percentage (14.8%), and presents the bookmaker with the biggest liability.
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Bill Ordine was a reporter and editor in news and sports for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Baltimore Sun for 25 years, and was a lead reporter on a team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News. Bill started reporting on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for 10 years. He covered the World Series of Poker for a decade and his articles on gaming have appeared in many major U.S. newspapers, such as the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald and others.