While Ezekiel Elliott's leap into the Salvation Army's kettle has put many NFL fans in a jovial mood, the rookie out of Ohio State is clearly making a case for why he should be the Rookie of the Year and possibly the 2016 NFL MVP.
In case you missed it, in Sunday night's game between the Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with the game tied 3-3, Elliot took a hand-off from quarterback Dak Prescott and scored a touchdown, putting the Cowboys up 10-3. However, it isn't the touchdown that fans are talking about today, it's the attention Elliot has drawn towards a great cause -- donating money to the Salvation Army.According to a Fox News report, the Salvation Army has seen a dramatic increase in donations since Elliott jumped into the red kettle bucket during the Dallas Cowboys' big win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Who says that sports figures don't have an impact on the general public?
Lt. Colonel Ron Busroe, a spokesman for the Salvation Army, told TMZ Sports that the organization has seen a 61 percent increase in online giving since Elliott's jump into the kettle. Ironically, many people are donating $21 at a time, which just happens to be Elliott's number.
This isn't just a great incident for football, it is great for the country. It just shows that a lot of players are kids at heart, and what Elliott has done is great for drawing some much-needed attention of giving back at the holiday season to the many people of the world who need it the most.
Now the question is has Elliott's jump helped him claim the MVP award? The real question is, how could it not?
Of course, no one deserves such a big reward just for drawing attention to a great cause -- they deserve it for their performance on the gridiron. Elliott is the best running back in the NFL right now, period. He is averaging 110 yards per game, has 13 touchdowns, and is closing in on 1,600 rushing yards, all with two games still left on the schedule.
The "kettle leap" as it will forever be known, is just the icing on the cake.
According to the latest NFL MVP odds reported by Oddsshark, Elliott and New England's Tom Brady are the top two favorites to win the 2016 MVP award. While Elliott is having a monstrous rookie season, you can't overlook what Brady has done with the Patriots.
Brady just passed the 3,000-yard passing mark and has 22 touchdown passes on the season, and let's not forget he missed the first four games of the 2016 campaign due to a suspension.
Right behind Brady is Detroit's Matt Stafford. Stafford is also deserving of the MVP award for many reasons, but most of all could be the fact that he has led the Lions to eight come from behind wins this year -- all of them occurring in the final quarter of play.
The Lions have one of the worst rushing teams in the NFL, yet they are 9-5 and in the thick of the postseason hunt, and that is mostly due to Stafford's incredible play. He truly is one of the most underrated players in the NFL. Stafford's value to the Lions is incredibly high, and if Detroit holds on to win the NFC North, he has to be taken into serious consideration for the 2016 MVP.
Who is your pick for the NFL MVP this season?
Here are the latest MVP odds according to Bovada.
- Ezekiel Elliott (DAL) +250
- Tom Brady (NE) +275
- Matthew Stafford (DET) +400
- Matt Ryan (ATL) +450
- Aaron Rodgers (GB) +750
- Derek Carr (OAK) +900
- Russell Wilson (SEA) +3300
- Dak Prescott (DAL) +3300
- Kirk Cousins (WSH) +4000
- Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) +4000
[Featured Image by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]