We are about to enter Week 11 of the NFL season (that's both exciting and depressing at the same time), so it's time to start thinking about who is up for the biggest award in the sport. While one Indianapolis quarterback is looking to win the award for a third straight time, it is another, less-expected player behind center that leads the way. Who has a shot at being named the best player from this crazy season?
1.) Michael Vick(notes), QB, Philadelphia -- I said this to a friend after the Monday night "game" against the Redskins, and still stand by it, hyperbole and all: This season, Vick has been the most dominant player I've ever watched play football. Now, you have to understand, I'm not as old as some of you that got to see some of the greats back in the '80s and early '90s, but from what I'm seeing, Vick is the equivalent of John Wall walking into a pick-up basketball gym and playing hoops. Everyone would stand back, thinking, "This guy is SO MUCH BETTER than everyone else." That's how I feel Vick is as an NFL quarterback. With him being so accurate with the ball (still hasn't thrown a pick this season), it seems he can rush for 20 or more yards per attempt. The only knock? He's played just six games this season.
2.) Peyton Manning(notes), QB Indianapolis -- Sure, he hasn't had the best statistical year of his career, but he still has the Colts at 6-3 and leading their division. I don't really think there is anything more I can say about Peyton here that hasn't been said. He's the best leader in football, period.
[Photos: More of Manning in action]
3.) Darren McFadden(notes), RB Oakland -- Did you know the Raiders are 5-4, with Jason Campbell(notes) behind center? Yep, that's because the former Razorback running back is having a monster season. He leads the league in yards per game (108.1) by nearly six yards and is one of the few top backs playing for a serious playoff contender.
[Photos: Darren McFadden on the field]
4.) Tom Brady(notes), QB New England -- They're arguably the best team in football, and he's the head of the operation. Also, a side-note: When did Brady become so tough? The guy was screaming at his offensive line on Sunday night like he'd gone mad. I mean, I like the fire he's got, but geez, lighten up. You were killing the Steelers. Also, Brady hasn't had an interception his last four games, against the Chargers, Vikings, Browns and Steelers. That's a pretty meaty group to go through without one loose toss.
5.) Roddy White(notes), WR Atlanta -- In nine games, White has surpassed 100 yards receiving five times, including his 201-yard performance in the presence of those reality-star receivers on the Bengals. He is the main part of the hottest offense in football right now (averaging just over 30 points a game in their last three contests, all wins), and along with Matt Ryan(notes), beat the Ravens last Thursday night nearly by themselves. A wide-out has never won the MVP award, but this season has been so weird, why not give it to him?
[Photos: More of the Falcons' Roddy White]
Others on our list: Tampa Bay quarterback Josh Freeman(notes), San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers(notes), Baltimore defensive end Haloti Ngata(notes), Detroit defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh(notes) and Houston running back Arian Foster(notes).
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