Power Ranking Top 10 NFL MVP Candidates Heading into Week 12

1 of 11

Top 10 MVP Candidates

Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports

Much like the NFL, the MVP race is heating up as we get closer to start Week 12 this Thursday.

This past week the lone undefeated team of the league finally lost a game and while there were some unexpected performances from some role players, the big guys stepped it up when it matter the most to help their teams get their respective wins.

Not much has changed in the MVP race from one week to another as two quarterbacks are still occupying the first two positions of the ranking, but after them, everything is up for grabs. Up to four different positions feature in the rankings and while two teams have more than one player in the list, an argument could be made for any of the players in the list to come away with the award once it’s all said and done.

While several teams like the Denver Broncos, the New Orleans Saints and the Seattle Seahawks are expected to make the playoffs and contend for the Super Bowl thanks to spectacular years from their stars, players from other teams have also gained some spotlight after recent performances that have them as candidates to be crowned as the league’s most valuable player.

The next weeks will be crucial to see which player can stand above the rest as the quest to be the best is getting tighter down the stretch.

Without further ado, please join me through this slideshow as we check the Top 10 MVP candidates in the NFL as we get closer to Week 12.

Juan Pablo Aravena is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @jparavenarant or add him to your network on Google.

2 of 11

10. WR Wes Welker - Denver Broncos

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

The former New England Patriots receiver has thrived playing for the Denver Broncos this year as he’s been a constant offensive weapon for Peyton Manning. He’s been one of the best wideouts in the NFL this season and an argument could be made to give him the MVP award based on his consistency in the league’s best offense.

3 of 11

09. QB Andrew Luck - Indianapolis Colts

Brian Spurlock - USA Today Sports

The second-year quarterback has continued his progression this season and despite some inconsistencies in recent weeks, his performance this year can’t be overlooked. Considering the fact that the Indianapolis Colts have no running game and that their biggest threat on the passing game won’t return to the field this season, much of the Colts’ success this campaign can be accredited to Luck.

4 of 11

08. WR Calvin Johnson - Detroit Lions

Tim Fuller - USA TODAY Sports

Considering by some as one of the best receivers in the history of the NFL, "Megatron" is having another season for the ages. He already surpassed the 1,000 yards received on only 59 catches and he has already found the end zone 11 times. He’s the biggest reason why the Detroit Lions still have chances to get to the postseason this year.

5 of 11

07. RB LeSean McCoy - Philadelphia Eagles

John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports

LeSean McCoy has been the deadliest weapon on the resurging Philadelphia Eagles this season. He’s currently leading the NFL in rushing yards and he’s been a threat both in the ground and through the air so far. It doesn’t matter if Nick Foles or Michael Vick is under center, the Eagles will remain competitive as soon as McCoy can produce at a steady rate.

6 of 11

06. QB Cam Newton - Carolina Panthers

Jeremy Brevard - USA Today Sports

The Carolina Panthers have been one of the most pleasant surprises in the NFL this season and the improved play of Cam Newton in recent weeks has been one of the biggest reasons why. Following a strong win over the San Francisco 49ers, Newton displayed another MVP-caliber performance on primetime against the New England Patriots this past Monday. The Panthers look like a playoff team right now and much of it is thanks to Newton.

7 of 11

05. RB Jamaal Charles - Kansas City Chiefs

John Rieger - USA Today Sports

The biggest offensive threat of one of the best teams in the league, Jamaal Charles is arguably one of the best running-backs in the history of the NFL. The Kansas City Chiefs have been recognized for their strong defense this season but the stellar play of Jamaal Charles this year is also a reason why they were the only undefeated team in the league only one week ago.

8 of 11

04. RB Marshawn Lynch - Seattle Seahawks

Joe Nicholson - USA Today Sports

The Seattle Seahawks have one of the most balanced teams in the league as they have a top defense and a solid attack that starts – and usually ends – with Marshawn Lynch. "Beast Mode" has been a steady performer for the Hawks this season and the team will go far in the playoffs if Lynch is able to continue the success he’s enjoyed in the regular season.

9 of 11

03. TE Jimmy Graham - New Orleans Saints

Derick E. Hingle - USA Today Sports

Jimmy Graham has been the biggest weapon of one of the best offenses in the league and he’s being a difference maker in a relatively difficult position to play as TE. He’s been battling with some injuries in recent weeks but his impact can’t be denied as he has produced every time Drew Brees has looked for him.

10 of 11

02. QB Drew Brees - New Orleans Saints

John David Mercer - USA TODAY Sports

Drew Brees has established himself as one of best quarterbacks in the NFL a long time ago, but his performance this season will surely go down as one of the best a quarterback has had in recent years. The New Orleans Saints are a legit offensive force and many experts consider them favorites to get to the Super Bowl and a lot of that is thanks to Drew Brees’ play. He has surpassed 300 yards in eight of ten games this season and already has 26 TD passes to his name.

11 of 11

01. QB Peyton Manning - Denver Broncos

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Peyton Manning has been the heart and soul of the Denver Broncos this season, leading the league’s best offense and putting some numbers that will surely make history once the regular season is over. He has been the most decisive player in the NFL this season by a mile and it would be a shock if he doesn’t end up winning his fifth MVP award once it’s all said and done.