Author's Note: All odds below were found via DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, February 1st, 2021
As you all are aware the Super Bowl MVP is the most prestigious of NFL awards, and one that is heavily bet on each and every year. And when deciding who to wager on for a given Super Bowl there are a few basic principles to consider. First, the team you believe that will win the game is essentially a guarantee to have the MVP award winner on their team. The Super Bowl MVP has been won by a player on the winning team in 53 of 54 Super Bowls. The Chiefs are -3 point favorites and -170 on the moneyline, therefore they have implied odds of about 63% to win the game and have the MVP on their team. Another aspect to consider is the value of the quarterback position itself. A quarterback has won the award 30 times in 54 games (55%), while running backs and wide receivers have won it seven times each (13%). The remaining 11 were won by players on defense (there are 55 total awards due to having co-MVP winners in 1978).
Seven of the past 10 Super Bowl MVP awards have in fact gone to the QB position, including three from the two quarterbacks playing on Sunday. Tom Brady in his career has a total of four Super Bowl MVP's while Patrick Mahomes won his first last year. The most recent "non-QB" to win this ward was Julian Edelman in 2019 when the New England Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams in a13-3 defensive battle and Edelman was seemingly the lone standout offensive player in the game. I point this out because this year we have a very high game total set at 56.5 points. With a total that high, we can expect tons of offense, and we can also expect these two teams to throw the ball often, making the safest choices for this award the QBs yet again. There is a reason why Mahomes is currently -106 to win this year's award while Brady is +210. Despite the obvious value resting with the signal-callers in this contest, below I will outline some other Super Bowl MVP odds/picks that could be also worth taking a shot on for Sunday.
The Favorites - Patrick Mahomes (-106) and Tom Brady (+210)
Both of these teams have the ability to go deep into their respective passing games and will look to throw as much as they can. With Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill on one side of the ball and Mike Evans and Chris Godwin on the other side, the QBs have a clear advantage at winning this award in Super Bowl LV.
The Chiefs Value Plays - Travis Kelce +1300 and Tyreek Hill +1200
Travis Kelce is simply a difference maker and an absolute beast on the field, posting eight or more receptions in 9 of his last 10 games and eclipsing 100 receiving yards in seven of those while flashing big play ability and tons of touchdown equity. If Kelce puts up an outstanding stat line like 10/150/3 it would be hard not to give him the MVP award. Tyreek Hill, on the other hand, torched the Bucs's secondary back in Week 12 with a ridiculous 13/269/3 receiving line and if he can put up anything similar to that then he's got a legit chance. These will be arguably the two most talented players on the football field come Sunday.
The Bucs Value Plays - Mike Evans and Chris Godwin +3000
Both Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are excellent wide receivers that can do damage in different ways. If one of them goes off for a career game, coupled with a Bucs win, then it's within the realm of possibility that we could see an MVP surprise here. These players are less likely to take home the MVP hardware due to the fact that Brady likes to spread the ball around but there's still a shot, reflected in the +3000 odds.
The Sleepers - Devin White +4000 and Leonard Fournette +2500
Tampa Bay linebacker Devin White has the potential to be the x-factor on defense on Sunday. White has an INT and two fumble recoveries so far in the 2020 playoffs while having 11 and 15 combined tackles, respectively, in those games. If he were to get a defensive touchdown that somehow changes the swing of the game, coupled with the Bucs offense not having its best day but still coming away with a W, then you never know (similar to Von Miller's Super Bowl MVP award when the Denver Broncos won it all in 2016).
Although the Bucs have quite the receiving core with the aforementioned Evans and Godwin they still like to run a lot on first down and check down to running back Leonard Fournette in the passing game. If he were to break a couple big runs and end up with a couple pivotal TDs, then it's possible that we could see him win this. Please note, however, that James White scored three TDs (including one in OT) with 14 receptions and 139 total scrimmage yards, yet the MVP award still went to Brady in Superbowl LI.
The Longshots - Jason Pierre Paul +7000 and Shaquil Barrett +5000
With the recent injuries to Kansas City's offensive line, these two defensive stars for the Bucs are similar to Devin White in that they could each have the opportunity to change the game. With a strip sack and subsequent defensive TD, one of them could be in line to win, and with the more-than-juicy odds of +7000 and +5000, it could worth a shot if you believe Tampa Bay will take advantage of the Chiefs' OL.