Originally posted on Sports-Glory  |  Last updated 12/21/12
With two weeks left in the regular season, the race for MVP has been whittled down to a two-man contest, Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson. While arguments can also be made for Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and J.J. Watt, the reality is that Manning and Peterson both overcame impossible, insurmountable odds. And both performed at a level that exceeded all expectations. Manning, as we know, underwent four neck procedures in a span of only 19 months, while Peterson tore his ACL and MCL on Christmas Eve last year. Those are the types of injuries that not only put you on injured reserve but, could end your career. That’s about as simple as it gets. Just ask Dennis Byrd, Daunte Culpepper, Terrell Davis, Gale Sayers, Sterling Sharpe and Chris Spielman, to name a few. Returning to the field is a feat in itself, but Manning and Peterson also elevated their game (and their teams) in the process. So far, Manning has thrown for 4,016 yards and 31 touchdowns. He’s lead the Broncos to an AFC West title and they’re projected to take the two-seed in the playoffs. He’s resurrected his career to new heights, something many believed impossible, even for No. 18. Adrian Peterson, however, is on pace to break one of the most sacred, most revered records in NFL history: Eric Dickerson’s 1984 single-season rushing record of 2,105 yards. For some perspective, the record is so daunting only three players have even broken 2,000 yards in that 28 year span: Terrell Davis (2,008 yards in 1998), Jamal Lewis (2,066 yards in 2003) and Chris Johnson (2,006 yards in 2009). With 294 yards to go and two games remaining, the idea of Peterson breaking that record is astonishing. After his devastating injury, Peterson underwent extensive surgery, followed by a long and grueling rehabilitation process that commonly takes between seven and nine months. And that process, along with immense dedication, only ensures a return to normal activity. And normal for running backs in the NFL is not the same as normal for you and me. Peterson isn’t normal. He’s superhuman. Just look at his numbers - they don’t lie. This season, Peterson has carried the ball 289 times, averaged 6.3 yards per carry and rushed for 1,812 yards and 11 touchdowns. Last week at the Rams, Peterson ran for 212 yards on 24 carries, including an incredible 82-yard touchdown run, his longest of the season. Can he produce those same stats at the Texans on Sunday? While it’s certainly possible (and, at this point, I wouldn’t dare bet against it), it’ll be arduous against the league’s fifth-ranked rushing defense. ESPN currently has Peterson’s projected season rushing total at 2,071 yards - 35 shy of surpassing the record. But, if he does break Dickerson’s record, conventional wisdom says Peterson should be MVP, right? Not quite.   In its 55 year history, quarterbacks have been selected MVP 37 times, compared to 17 for running backs; Manning himself has won it four times - the most of any player. Quarterback bias shouldn’t be a factor this year and if it is, voters should consider Peterson the real QB of the Vikings. Most would agree that it’s Peterson, not Christian Ponder, who’s kept Minnesota competitive this season. Dickerson, for his part, has made it perfectly clear. He doesn’t want Peterson to break his record. He told CBS Sports, “I don’t want him to break it. I’ll be honest. I don’t want to see it. If anyone ever broke it, and if my son played football, I’d want my son to break it. But that’s it. No one else.” Dickerson was one of the most competitive players to ever put on an NFL uniform, so his sentiment is understandable. But it’s time to pass the torch and Peterson is just as competitive, dedicated, talented and fearless as Dickerson was in his era. Records were made to be broken and if Peterson succeeds, he should and will be MVP.  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: K-State players storm student section after big win

Tony Dungy coaches his way into Canton

Top eight takeaways from NFL Honors awards

Report: Austin Rivers out 4-6 weeks with broken hand

Brett Favre Hall of Fame discussion took less than 10 seconds

WATCH: Pop wishes Kobe well in heartfelt message

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Eric Berry named NFL Comeback Player of the Year

Cam Newton to be named NFL MVP

Ezekiel Elliott hung out with Jim Brown

Rickie Fowler taunted by fans over his ex-girlfriend

Roger Goodell speaks about future of Pro Bowl in annual address

Mike Krzyzewski provides an update on his health

Another star confirmed for Super Bowl 50 halftime show

WATCH: Wayne Simmonds loses his cool, earns match penalty

Winners and losers from 2016 Hall of Fame vote

Brett Favre, Tony Dungy headline Hall of Fame Class of 2016

Terrell Owens says he was not elected to Hall of Fame

Bruins prospect hit in throat with puck, taken to hospital

WATCH: Mavs rookie laughed at for trash talking Spurs bench

Norris Cole has No. 30 retired with LeBron James, New Orleans Pelicans in attendance

Three keys to victory for the Broncos in Super Bowl 50

Torrey Smith: ‘This is probably the best offense’ for Kaepernick

Byron Scott thought D’Angelo Russell would be further along

Under-the-radar Super Bowl 50 matchups

Is Tim Lincecum's run with the San Francisco Giants done?

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Five outrageous predictions for Super Bowl 50

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

The top six matchups that could decide Super Bowl 50

Seven unheralded players set to make major impacts in SB 50

10 underrated performances in the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

X-factors in Super Bowl 50

NHL nightmare: No Canadian teams in playoff hunt

QUIZ: Name the Super Bowl halftime performers since 1991

Manziel's father fears for QB's life

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker