Andrew Brandt does not know who will be named NFL MVP, but he knows who it should be. It should be No. 12 in the green and gold.
“I just think whoever the MVP is – if it’s not Aaron Rodgers – I wouldn’t trade Aaron Rodgers for that person,” the MMQB business analyst said on CBS Sports Radio’s After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “Whether it’s Matt Ryan, whether it’s Dak Prescott, whether it’s Zeke Elliott, I just would not trade Aaron Rodgers for any of those players.”
The Packers started the season 4-6. There was talk of Rodgers declining and the team needing to move on from Mike McCarthy. But then Rodgers spoke of running the table – and then did it, leading the Packers to six straight wins to claim the NFC North crown for the fifth time in six years.
Rodgers was superb over Green Bay’s final six games, accounting for 16 touchdowns and zero interceptions. Heck, he combined for nine touchdowns in must-win games over Minnesota and Detroit in the final two weeks of the season.
“I just think he’s got such incredible movement skills in the pocket,” Brandt said, “and just when you think you’ve covered all the options, he’ll run or create space, and you see some of his dangerous passes outside of the pocket, which got to drive defensive coordinators crazy.”
While things are going swimmingly in Green Bay, they’re sinking in San Francisco. The Niners went 2-14 this season – with both wins coming against the Rams – and they’ve gone from 12 wins to eight to five to two over the last four seasons.
“It’s been a steady decline,” Brandt said. “It’s been a precipitous decline since Jim Harbaugh, who didn’t get along with management, and this sort of lack of getting along seems to have pervaded since then. There’s just never a sense that everybody’s working on the same page since that happened. Now even during their success, there were all those rumors about coaching and management not seeing eye to eye, but you sort of bring in the third level of ownership, and it just doesn’t seem like everything is simpatico there, which is really unfortunate because everybody knows what a great organizational history (the 49ers) have. Now they start fresh. Instead of bringing in Kelly along with Baalke, who was there before, they start new.”
Kelly, who is looking for a job for the second time in as many seasons, is 8-23 over the last two years. He started his NFL career 20-12.
“We’ll see what happens,” Brandt said. “I may be in the minority, but I still think Chip Kelly is a good coach. He’s a breath of fresh air to the NFL. He does things a little differently, which I think is good. He’s a change agent. He came out of college and won 10 games a year in Philly for two years. It didn’t work out there, but I think he’ll be somewhere – maybe not as head coach, but as coordinator. We’ll see what happens.”