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High expectations mean spoiled fans in Broncos Country

High expectations mean spoiled fans in Broncos Country

"Unlike in the Elway years we failed to watch the Broncos with wide-eyed amazement. Instead we anticipated victories and felt vindicated when they came. That's why the loss in the...

Radio Row INTERVIEW: Peter Burns scored his dream gig but the Press Box will remain in good hands

Radio Row INTERVIEW: Peter Burns scored his dream gig but the Press Box will remain in good hands

"The Press Box is my baby." Burns told me. "I am not looking forward to leaving it but I know it's in good hands." Read More ...

Drew Soicher’s bad joke pissed the Broncos off pretty good

Drew Soicher’s bad joke pissed the Broncos off pretty good

Drew Soicher's silly routine on 9 News got him in trouble this time. Audio provided by the Press Box Read More ....

Dusty Saunders takes Drew Soicher to task at long last

Dusty Saunders takes Drew Soicher to task at long last

"9 News employs dozens of excellent reporters and anchors who help the station set the gold standard with its local news product. Even its other sports anchors, Rod Mackey, Aaron...

The de-Masaiing of the Nuggets has begun

The de-Masaiing of the Nuggets has begun

When Masai Ujiri remained the GM of your Denver Nuggets he was held in very high regard as one of the NBA's finest wheeler-dealers. In his absence, though, some of...

Big idea: The Mile High Sports Magazine “Boys of Summer” issue.

Big idea: The Mile High Sports Magazine “Boys of Summer” issue.

"...they would be breaking every stereotype in the macho world of sports publishing."

Change nothing but change the name Redskins

Change nothing but change the name Redskins

"Once Daniel Snyder capitulates the matter will be swept beneath the rug within a week and our attention will be drawn elsewhere. That's the way these things work." Read more ...

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Will we look back more fondly on the Tebow season than on the Manning era?

If Peyton Manning never wins a Super Bowl with the Broncos it's quite possible that decades from now fans will look back with greater fondness on the 2011 season than...

Kathy Sabine's next level weather dong

Kathy Sabine's next level weather dong

Deadspin (http://deadspin.com/tag/weather-dong) (@Deadspin) has been tracking instances of weather dong for as long as we can remember so it's with all due credit to them that we present what...

Better grilling NOW with Mangrate, the grill enhancement system. Use promo code: Denver for a $10 discount

Better grilling NOW with Mangrate, the grill enhancement system. Use promo code: Denver for a $10 discount

We at South Stands have been using Mangrate (http://www.mangrate.com/) for years. What's Mangrate? It's the 100% made in America grill enhancement system consisting of solid cast iron grill grates just like...

Dear John: a face-painting fanatical Broncos fan confronts Reidy's disgust

Dear John: a face-painting fanatical Broncos fan confronts Reidy's disgust

The host of the South Stands Denver Fancast, our own John Reidy (@johnreidydenver), has been vocal in his digust for the Broncos since their disasterous performance in the Super Bowl....

Brian Shaw can cement his legacy as Denver's biggest jerk ever

Brian Shaw can cement his legacy as Denver's biggest jerk ever

"ESPN's Stephen A Smith, a giant turd of a human being, reported on ESPN radio on Friday that Shaw would like to come to the big apple and that he...

Michael Sam's kiss was jarring; not that there's anything wrong with that.

Michael Sam's kiss was jarring; not that there's anything wrong with that.

"Not everybody was prepared to see two athletes kissing on TV. And it wasn't only the kissing that rocked America. It was the gentle stroking of Sam's bicep, the hand...

Bandwagon vs. Fair Weather Fan : A Tutorial

Bandwagon vs. Fair Weather Fan : A Tutorial

"The actual bandwagon is reserved for those who do not follow sports, know nothing about the details and specifics of how the game is played or even the players who...

Don’t let Donald Sterling give racism center stage

Don’t let Donald Sterling give racism center stage

"This “look at me” rush to protestation gives too much credit to men like Donald Sterling and not enough credit to our society." Read more ...

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Wednesday, 19 December 2012 10:59

The MVP of the NFL does it All Day. By Zach Sheely

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Adrian Peterson for MVP over Peyton Manning, Tom Brady or even J.J. Watt? All Day.

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No matter how you define the Most Valuable Player of the NFL, one candidate has emerged who’s head and shoulders above the crowd in 2012. Battling back from a devastating injury in rapid time, and looking every bit his vintage, dominant self in leading his team into possible postseason contention, Adrian Peterson has run away from the NFL and the rest of the field in this year’s MVP race.


A.P. for MVP over Peyton Manning, Tom Brady or even J.J. Watt? All Day.
Since Peterson burst onto the scene as Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2007, he’s been a violent wrecking ball, shedding would-be tacklers and running away from safeties and cornerbacks in open space. He’s a once-in-a-generation player and is putting together a Hall of Fame career at the most battered position in the NFL – and those claims could’ve been made about A.P. prior to his eye-popping 2012 campaign.


Peterson has gained 1,812 yards rushing with 11 touchdowns through 14 games on a mere 289 carries, good for 129 yards per game on the ground and a staggering 6.3 yards per carry, (nearly identical numbers to Jim Brown’s 1963 14 game season stats) all after tearing both his ACL and MCL in his left knee Dec. 24, 2011. With two games remaining in the regular season, not only is A.P. is knocking loudly on the door to join the six other running backs who are already members of the 2,000 yard rushing club, he’s a legitimate threat to break Eric Dickerson’s 28 year old single-season rushing record of 2,105 yards – needing 294 yards, or roughly 147 yards per game to do so.


Brady or Peyton Manning would be an easy, obvious choice. Both have had stellar seasons – especially Manning, who’s led the Broncos to nine straight wins on a surgically repaired neck after missing the entire 2011 season – and it’s the belief in this corner that one of these two gentlemen will hoist the Lombardi Trophy come February. However, the MVP is a regular-season award, and thus far, no one has been better than A.P.   


Peterson has shattered the mold of what an MVP should be in this pass-heavy era.  Contrary to recent history, the MVP doesn’t have to be awarded to a quarterback.
Anyone who plays fantasy football knows that running back by committee or platoon is en vogue. A backfield consisting of two to three running backs of varying styles that split carries is commonplace.


Peterson harkens back to halcyon days when a top running game with an “every-down back” was a key offensive priority. Anyone who’s watched him throughout his career knows that he can get the tough yards after contact and he score from anywhere. His four touchdown runs of 60+ yards in 2012 have bumped him to ten in that category for his career, an NFL record.  
In his last eight games, dating to an Oct. 21 win vs. the Cardinals, Peterson has rushed for 1,313 yards – an average of 164 per game – good for the most yards on the ground in an eight-game span in NFL history. (Christian Ponder, the Vikings quarterback, has 1,093 passing yards in the same eight games.)


With individual awards, it’s easy to get lost in the numbers, but no player in the NFL has been more valuable to his team this season than Peterson. One determining factor of an MVP is to imagine where his team would be without him. Sans A.P., the Vikings brain trust is already strategizing about whom to pick at number one overall in April’s draft.


Minnesota ranks last in the entire league in passing yardage. Percy Harvin, the Vikings only other viable offensive threat, went down with a season-ending ankle injury in a Nov. 4 loss to the Seahawks. The Vikings have thus been even more reliant on Peterson, making his accomplishments all the more amazing and valuable. Opposing defenses are able to focus heavily on stopping him, stacking eight and nine in the box, daring him to beat them.
And he has. Peterson is the best player in the NFL and his 2012 season has been reminiscent of the Barry Sanders-led Lions. He’s a man among boys, carrying an otherwise inept offensive team to relevance, and maybe even into the playoffs.


Even if Peterson doesn’t break Dickerson’s record, he’s still earned himself the MVP award this season. Anyone who disagrees hasn’t been watching.

Last modified on Wednesday, 19 December 2012 11:58

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