The Top Five Super Bowl MVP Performances Since 2000

The Super Bowl has seen lots of amazing performances, below are my top five most valuable players since 2000:

Super Bowl XLIV: New Orleans Saints – Drew Brees (QB)

In 2009, the New Orleans Saints led the NFL in scoring, averaging 31.9 points per game.  Quarterback Drew Brees finished the regular season with 4,338 passing yards, 34 touchdowns, an NFL record 70.6 completion percentage, and a 109.6 passer rating, tops in the NFL.

The Saints entered the playoffs as the number one seed in the NFC with a 13-3 record.  In the divisional round, New Orleans beat Arizona, 45-14.  In the victory, the New Orleans signal caller threw for 247 yards and three touchdowns.  In an exciting NFC Championship game against the Minnesota Vikings, Brees threw for 197 yards and three touchdowns as the Saints pulled out the victory in overtime, 31-28, to win their first NFC Championship, setting up a matchup with the Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV. 

Drew Brees outdueled New Orleans native Peyton Manning in Super Bowl XLIV as the Saints, a 4.5-point underdog, won their first Super Bowl in franchise history.  The Saints quarterback was 32 of 39 for 288 yards and two touchdowns in the 31-17 win over the Indianapolis Colts.  While most remember this game for the gutsy on-sides kick that the Saints executed perfectly to begin the second half, it was their leader Drew Brees, who was calm at the controls leading New Orleans to the championship.  In the victory, the Saints #9, tied the Super Bowl record for completions in a game with 32 (which has since been broken by Tom Brady) and his 82.1 completion percentage is the second best in Super Bowl history.

After the game was over and Drew Brees was hoisting the Lombardi Trophy, while holding his young son, I thought to myself I can’t believe the ‘Aints won the Super Bowl.  This was a franchise that saw their fans wear paper bags over their heads.  It’s also where NFL legends of the 70’s such as Ken Stabler and Earl Campbell ended their illustrious careers and the best know quarterback in franchise history besides Archie Manning, last name was used as joke on Seinfeld, that would be, Bobby Herbert, who threw for 14,630 yards and 85 touchdowns in a Saints uniform.  In the city of New Orleans eyes, the Saints were no longer a laughing matter and Drew Brees will always be regarded simply as football royalty.

Super Bowl 50: Denver Broncos – Von Miller (LB)

In 2015, the Denver Broncos were 12-4 and the number one seed in the AFC playoffs.  Peyton Manning battled injuries throughout the season and the Broncos were led by their fourth ranked defense allowing 18.5 points per game.  At the heart of the defense was Von Miller, who had 11 sacks, nine tackles for loss, three fumble recoveries and 32 quarterback hits. 

Against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the divisional round, Von Miller had two tackles in the Broncos 23-16 victory.  In the AFC Championship game against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, the Broncos #58 was simply dominant.  In the 20-18 victory he had 2.5 sacks, two tackles for loss, four quarterback hits, and a second quarter interception inside the New England 15-yard line, which set up a Denver touchdown.  The win sent the Broncos to Super Bowl 50 to face the NFC Champion Carolina Panthers. 

Von Miller had one of the best individual performances in a Super Bowl by a defensive player in the last 20 years, as the Broncos were a five-point underdog to the Panthers.  He had 2.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and two quarterback hits.  The first fumble he caused occurred on a strip sack that was recovered by Malik Jackson for Denver’s first touchdown of the game.  His second strip sack happened with 4:16 left in the fourth quarter as Carolina was trying to mount a comeback.  T.J. Ward recovered the fumble and had Denver set-up inside the Panthers 5-yard line; after a few stops, Denver’s C.J. Anderson scored on a two-yard touchdown run effectively sealing the 24-10 win for the Broncos.  Von Miller was a wrecking ball and his performance earned him MVP honors. 

Super Bowl 50 will also be remembered for it being Peyton Manning’s last game; and like John Elway walking off the field a Super Bowl champion for the second time in his career, but this victory was all about the defense and their dominance over league MVP Carolina quarterback Cam Newton.

Super Bowl LI: New England Patriots – Tom Brady (QB)

In 2016 the New England Patriots were 14-2, winning the AFC East and being the number one seed in the AFC playoffs.  At 39 years old, Tom Brady threw for 3,554 yards, 28 touchdowns, two interceptions, with a 67.4 completion percentage and a 112.2 passer rating.  The Patriots quarterback finished second in the MVP balloting.

In the divisional round, New England beat Houston 34-16 behind Brady’s 287 passing yards and two touchdowns.  In the AFC Championship game, the Patriots who were a 5.5-point favorite beat the Steelers 36-17.  Tom Brady threw for 384 yards, three touchdowns with a 127.5 passer rating.  The victory set up a meeting in Super Bowl LI between the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons led by league MVP quarterback Matt Ryan.

Super Bowl LI will forever be remembered for the score of 28-3, which was the deficit the Patriots faced in the third quarter.  The Patriots #12, helped to orchestrate one of the greatest comebacks in NFL history.  New England, who entered the game as a three-point favorite was able to chip away at the lead and entered the fourth quarter down   28-9.  After Stephen Gostkowski kicked a field goal to make it 28-12, Brady led back-to-back touchdown drives in regulation to tie the game at 28 and then led the team down the field in overtime culminating in James White’s two-yard touchdown run to give the Patriots the championship.  Brady finished the game 43-62 for 466 yards, two touchdowns, with a 95.2 passer rating and was named the game’s MVP.   

The Super Bowl title was Tom Brady’s fifth of his career and solidified his place as the G.O.A.T., standing alone as the only quarterback to have won five Super Bowl rings.    

Super Bowl LII: Philadelphia Eagles – Nick Foles (QB)

The Philadelphia Eagles were off to an 11-2 in 2017 then Carson Wentz tore his ACL and thoughts of Philadelphia winning the championship seemed to have been dashed.  But Nick Foles stepped into replace Wentz and the Eagles caught lightning in a bottle leading to the franchise’s first Super Bowl title. 

Against the Atlanta Falcons in the divisional round, Foles threw for 246 yards in the 15-10 victory.  In the NFC Championship game, Philadelphia blew out the Minnesota Vikings, 38-7, the Eagles #9 threw for 352 yards and three touchdowns.  The victory earned the Eagles a date with the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII and an opportunity to win the franchise’s first NFL championship since 1960. 

In one of the most shocking individual performances and upsets in Super Bowl history, Nick Foles, and the Eagles, a 4.5-point underdog, upset Tom Brady and the New England Patriots with an amazing performance by a quarterback who pondered retirement in the previous off season.  Foles threw for 373 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.  He also caught a one-yard touchdown pass on a trick play from Trey Burton to give Philadelphia a 10-point lead before halftime.  The play called “Philly Special,” was suggested by Foles to head coach Doug Pederson in the timeout before the magical Super Bowl moment.  The Eagles signal caller led the team down the field in the fourth quarter and threw the game winning touchdown pass to tight end Zach Ertz.  That storybook performance gave Philadelphia a 41-33 win, Foles was named the game’s MVP as Philadelphia defeated New England 41-33, giving the Eagles their first Super Bowl championship in franchise history. 

Carson Wentz did regain his starting quarterback spot in 2018 when he was healthy, but the playoff performance by Foles the year before made him a franchise legend, a statue resides at Lincoln Financial Field celebrating the Eagles Super Bowl victory and the famed Philly Special play.

Super Bowl LIV: Kansas City Chiefs – Patrick Mahomes (QB)

In 2019, Patrick Mahomes helped lead the Kansas City Chiefs to a 12-4 record and the number two seed in the AFC playoffs: as AFC West division champions.  The Chiefs quarterback threw for 4,031 yards, 26 touchdowns while completing 65.9% of his passes; the previous season he won the NFL MVP throwing for 5,097 yards and leading the league in touchdown passes (50) and QBR (80.3).    

In the divisional round, the Chiefs beat the Houston Texans 51-31 after being down 21-0 at the end of the first quarter.  Mahomes threw for 321 yards and five touchdowns as Kansas City outscored Houston 51-10 in the final three quarters of the game.  In the AFC Championship game, Kansas City beat Tennessee to clinch their first berth in the Super Bowl since beating the Minnesota Vikings, 23-7 in Super Bowl IV.  The Chiefs signal caller threw for 294 yards, rushed for 53 yards, and accounted for four touchdowns (three passing and one rushing). 

In their first Super Bowl appearance since January 1970, the Kansas City Chiefs were a 1.5-point favorite over the NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers.  For the first three quarters of the game, the Chiefs #15 did not play well throwing two interceptions as Kansas City entered the fourth quarter of the game down 21-10.  Superman finally found his cape as Mahomes led the Chiefs on three straight scoring drives, each resulting in a touchdown.  For the game he was 26-42 for 286 yards and two touchdowns (both in the game’s final quarter).  For his fourth quarter heroics he was named the game’s MVP. 

After all the years of heartbreaking losses in the playoffs, Kansas City was finally Super Bowl champions and Patrick Mahomes was now at the top of the NFL and could be called a champion. 

Scott has been a sports fan since he received a New York Mets jacket as a toddler. He’s been playing fantasy baseball and football for over 20 years, dating back to Frank Thomas being one of his first fantasy baseball picks. As a professional, he has covered the NFL, MLB, NCAAF, and NCAAB and is looked to as the go-to guy for fantasy sports amongst family, friends, and co-workers.