Oakland Raiders Offensive MVP Tournament: Round 1

Recently, I watched a video of Tyvon Branch's 2011 season highlights and I got to thinking: Tyvon Branch is so good, yet so undervalued by the NFL. Then that thought flew to another—our entire team is undervalued. Then it got to the question, who is the Raiders' most valuable player?

I got out pen and paper and began to trim it down to the absolute best. But this idea shot into my head —what if I wrote about it on Bleacher Report and made a tournament of it? I could break it into two parts, one for offense and one for defense, and create a great, interactive series out of it.  

I'll begin by listing the offensive players that I felt had a big enough impact on the 2011 season but will also continue to do well in 2012. The participants are quarterback Carson Palmer, running backs Darren McFadden and Marcel Reece, receivers Darrius Heyward-Bey, Denarius Moore, and Jacoby Ford, and linemen Jared Veldheer and Stefen Wisniewski. 

At random, I gave them all numbers and assigned them to a competitor. The matchups will be Reece versus Veldheer, Ford versus Heyward-Bey, Wisniewski versus McFadden, and Moore versus Palmer.

And with that, let me introduce our first matchup.  

Marcel Reece comes into this matchup as the "Matchup Nightmare" because of his wide range of skills. The undrafted fullback came into the NFL as a receiver. He has the build of an H-Back, and Reece can truly do it all. He is an average blocker, but when he lines up somewhere else, the defense panics. He has great hands and is incredibly fast for his size. He is strong, athletic and an important of the Raider offense.

Reece had a slightly disappointing season due to injury. After playing in 16 games (10 starts) in 2010, Reece looked to expand his role in the offense. A nagging ankle injury in 2011, however, limited Reece to only six starts and 12 games, but that did not hurt his production.  


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