Taking two long shots for Super Bowl MVP

February 2, 2021 11:33 PM

The NFL awards show Saturday night will feature announcements of the Most Valuable Player, Offensive Rookie of the Year, Coach of the Year and Comeback Player of the Year. 

I will review all my NFL futures next week after the Super Bowl, but it looks like I’m in a good spot with Justin Herbert to win Offensive Rookie of the Year. Justin Jefferson is the only competition, and while he put up deserving numbers, I’d be shocked if Herbert didn’t win overwhelmingly. It would be a big win. It would guarantee a positive NFL season and turn green my entire VSiN futures portfolio for the year. 

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Super Bowl

I think Tampa Bay will win the Super Bowl. It comes down to Kansas City’s weakness along the offensive line and Tampa Bay’s superior defensive line. Chiefs left tackle Eric Fisher tore his Achilles tendon in the AFC championship game and will be replaced by Mike Remmers, who’s an average OT at best. Remmers has zero snaps at left tackle and will have his hands full blocking Jason Pierre-Paul.

The Buccaneers can’t win by trying to outscore Patrick Mahomes. They can win by continuing to force turnovers. That leads me to my MVP picks. 

The Super Bowl MVP is mostly a quarterback award, like the regular-season MVP. It’s possible, though rare, for a defensive player to win Super Bowl MVP. I try to find a couple of defensive players every year to back at big odds. The closest I’ve come to winning was having Kam Chancellor 200-1 when the Seahawks beat the Broncos in 2014. My methodology isn’t exactly rocket science. I check the game logs and look for defenders who are on the field for the most snaps every week. You ideally want guys who are on the field for almost 100% of the plays but definitely at least 85% or 90%. This year I focused on three Tampa Bay defensive linemen, two of whom still have playable numbers.

I found two numbers at BetMGM that are still playable. One was Jason Pierre-Paul to win Super Bowl MVP 80-1 at BetMGM. I bet it $500 on Pierre-Paul at + 8850. For comparison, it has been bet down to 50-1 at Circa and 70-1 at DraftKings. The second playable number I found was also at BetMGM, Ndamukong Suh at 250-1. I bet Suh to win for $100. 

I also bet Shaquil Bennett at 110-1 to win Super Bowl MVP, but that looks like it has been bet down to the 50-1 range everywhere. If the Chiefs win, Mahomes will likely win his second Super Bowl MVP after being the regular-season MVP runner-up both times.

The case for Pierre-Paul is that he has played 86%, 83% and 88% of the defensive snaps in the Bucs’ three playoff games. He had two sacks against the Packers after leading the team with 9.5 sacks and four forced fumbles in the regular season. The lowest percentage of snaps played was 78% at Denver in Week 3. 

The case for Suh isn’t as strong. He doesn’t fill up the stat sheet and has played only 72% of the defensive snaps the last two games, lower than I typically like. But I think he will be in a position to make plays against a depleted Chiefs offensive line. I think Suh will show up and have a big game Sunday, and I’ve spent $100 on worse things.  

 

MLB Futures

Let’s look at some MLB futures while everyone is busy with the Super Bowl because it looks like some good numbers are still available.

Last week I said I was not interested in any NL Central teams, but then the Cardinals traded for Nolan Arenado. That has changed the picture slightly.

By trading for Arenado and giving up virtually nothing of value, the Cardinals have made themselves the early NL Central favorites. Yet while Bookmaker/CRIS, the sharpest offshore book with odds up in these markets right now, has moved the Cardinals down to + 124, I’m still seeing + 210 available at BetMGM, + 200 at FanDuel and + 180 at DraftKings. 

I’m playing the Cardinals to win the NL Central at + 210 at BetMGM, and I’m risking $1,000 because it’s significantly better than the CRIS market price of + 124. 

Recap 

$500 to win $44,250 on Jason Pierre-Paul to win Super Bowl MVP at + 8850 

$100 to win $15,000 on Ndamukong Suh to win Super Bowl MVP at 250-1

$1,000 to win $2,100 on the St. Louis Cardinals to win the NL Central at + 210 

All bets are at BetMGM.

Another $1,000 in MLB futures brings the 2021 running total to $4,835. 

Next week I’ll do lots of accounting for the NFL season and figure out how much I’ve won or lost. Then we’ll shift our attention back to baseball full time.

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