clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Christian McCaffrey, Brock Purdy gain footing in MVP race after Cowboys rout

The 49ers have two players right in the thick of the MVP race after five weeks of NFL football.

Brock Purdy #13 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates his rushing touchdown with Christian McCaffrey #23 during the fourth quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi’s Stadium on October 01, 2023 in Santa Clara, California. Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys came into Levi’s Stadium on Sunday Night Football looking to show the country they should be right up there in the conversation for best team in the NFC. Unfortunately, three hours later and a 42-10 drubbing, only showed the 49ers are here to stay in 2023.

San Francisco’s win also highlighted two of the most-consistent offensive players for the 49ers, Brock Purdy and Christian McCaffrey. Both players are squarely in the MVP race through five games.

Brock Purdy

Purdy came into Week 5 tied for the sixth-best odds at DraftKings Sportsbook to win MVP at +1700, but after completing 17-of-24 passes for 252 yards and four touchdowns, he moved all the way down to +1000 after the game and +700 overnight.

Purdy has been seen by many as a quarterback who puts up good numbers due to Kyle Shanahan’s offensive schemes. While there is some truth to that, Purdy still has to get on the field and execute at a very high level. And he has done just that and consistently.

On the season Purdy has completed 88-of-136 passes for 1,271 yards and nine touchdowns to no interceptions. He’s also added two short touchdown runs.

He isn’t going to be a high-end fantasy football quarterback, as the 49ers defense and rushing game are just too good to need to rely on Purdy balling out each week as a passer.

Christian McCaffrey

McCaffrey came into Week 5 tied with Purdy with the sixth-best odds at +1700. He didn’t need to put up his usual crazy touchdown numbers with Purdy connecting on four touchdown passes, but he still scored a touchdown, which he’s now done in 14 straight games. McCaffrey ended up having his worst game of the season, as he only totaled 78 yards and found the end zone one time. He still saw his odds drop to +1500 as his team continues to dominate, meaning he’ll continue to have chances for big numbers on a Super Bowl favorite.

We haven’t had a running back win MVP since Adrian Peterson in 2012, when he topped 2,000 rushing yards. Ladainian Tomlinson was the second to last running back to win it, and he did so in 2006 when he scored a record-setting 28 touchdowns. So, there’s no doubt a running back needs to put up crazy statistics to win MVP.

So far this season, McCaffrey has 99 carries for 510 yards and seven touchdowns, adding 20 receptions for 168 yards and another touchdown. That’s an average of 135.6 total yards and 1.4 touchdowns per game, which extrapolates to 2,305 total yards and 25 touchdowns. And that comes after his “worst” game of the year. He’s on pace for crazy statistics.

It’s going to be tough for either Purdy or McCaffrey to take out whoever comes out on top between Tua Tagovailoa (+475), Josh Allen (+500), Patrick Mahomes (+500), or Jalen Hurts (+700), but they both have legitimate shots this season.