Miami Dante Hall of the unbeaten Kansas City Chiefs has had a terrific half-season returning kickoffs and punts, with a pair of scores both ways. You could argue he is among the NFL's more exciting players.
But league MVP?
Can you say, "Getting a little carried away?"
This shouldn't be interpreted as anti-Hall in any way. He'd get my vote for Pro Bowl return specialist without question if the ballots were due today, seeing as he leads the league in punt returns and ranks sixth in kick returns.
Consider a few points, though:
- Hall isn't even the Most Valuable Player on his own team, let alone in the league. Running back Priest Holmes is in every way more important and more indispensable to Kansas City's drive to the Super Bowl. It isn't close. It isn't even close to being close. Ask yourself whom Dick Vermeil would rather be without in a big game?
- The Chiefs do not have the sort of weak, needy offense that relies on the odd return score for a spark. K.C.'s average winning margin has been 15 points this season. It's been 18 in the five games in which Hall has scored.
- Other players are more deserving of a leaguewide MVP at this point. Plenty of them. And much more deserving. Holmes, Titans quarterback Steve McNair, Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, Panthers running back Stephen Davis and Vikings receiver Randy Moss would be just a few of them.
By the way, 18 other players have scored as many or more touchdowns as Hall's five. Holmes leads everybody with 12.
There is a reason why an MVP award has never been won by a player who was primarily a return specialist. Heck, Deion Sanders was as dangerous a return man as Hall, played a much more important role as a starting cornerback than Hall does as a reserve receiver, and helped Dallas win Super Bowls -- and he was never an MVP.