By winning his fifth NFL MVP award, Peyton Manning simply extended his own record by setting a few more in 2013, setting himself apart from his usual comparison partner, Tom Brady, and winning the most prestigious award in football more times than any other player.
No one has even won it four times aside from him, as Unitas and Brett Favre have three awards as quarterbacks in different eras. Jim Brown, also with 3, is the only non-quarterback to win the award more than once.
Tom Brady – 2
Brady, who has played his entire 14-season career with the New England Patriots, has won the MVP award twice. The first came during his record setting 2007 season, throwing for 4806 yards, 50 touchdowns, completing 68.6% of his passes with a league high 117.2 passer rating. Three years later, leading the Patriots to a 14-2 season, Brady won the award again throwing for 3900 yards, 36 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions.
Kurt Warner – 2
Warner won his two MVP awards in 1999 and 2001 during the ‘Greatest Show on Turf’ era for the Rams. He completed 65.1% of his passes for 4353 yards and a league best 41 touchdowns in 1999 to lead the Rams into the Super Bowl (and win it). Two years later he completed 68.7% of his passes for 4830 yards and 36 touchdowns, making the Super Bowl again (and losing in it).
Steve Young – 2
It took Steve Young a lot of years, waiting for Montana to leave and open up the quarterback spot for him with the 49ers. He won his first MVP award in 1992, his first full season as a starter for the Niners, completing 66.7% of his passes for 3465 yards and 25 touchdown passes. In 1994, leading the Niners to the Super Bowl title, he threw for 3969 yards and 35 touchdowns while completing 70.3% of his passes.
Joe Montana – 2
A four-time Super Bowl champion and three-time Super Bowl MVP, Montana usually saved his best for the postseason. He won his regular season MVPs back to back: 1989 and 1990 while playing for the Niners (he left in 1993 to Kansas City). He completed 70.2% of his passes for 3521 yards an 26 touchdown passes in 1989. A year later he completed 61.7% of his passes for 3944 yards and 26 touchdowns as the Niners went 14-1 with him as a starter.
Brett Favre – 3
Favre won his three MVP awards while playing for the Green Bay Packers, with all of them coming back to back to back,.
- In 1995 he threw for 4413 yards with 38 touchdowns, completing 63% of his passes.
- In 1996 he completed 59.9% of his passes for 3899 yards and 39 touchdown passes, leading the Packers to Super Bowl victory.
- In 1997 it was another Super Bowl (and loss this time), throwing for 3867 yards and 35 touchdowns while completing 59.3% of his passes.
Johnny Unitas – 3
There are many who think Johnny Unitas was a quarterback playing in the wrong era, and would fit a lot more nicely in today’s pass-heavy offenses. He won his three MVP awards while playing for the Baltimore Colts.
- In 1959 he picked up his first, throwing for 2899 yards and 32 touchdowns.
- His second came in 1964, throwing for 2824 yards and 19 touchdowns.
- The third came in 1967, with Unitas throwing for 3428 yards and 20 touchdowns while completing 58.5% of his passes.
Jim Brown – 3
Jim Brown is the only non-quarterback to win the MVP more than once. He played his entire career for the Cleveland Browns, winning one NFL championship, retiring before the Super Bowl era.
- He won his first MVP in 1957, rushing for 942 yards and 9 touchdowns during his rookie season.
- His second MVP came a year later, with Brown exploding for 1527 yards and 17 touchdowns, averaging 127.3 yards per game (good enough for more than 2000 yards in a 16 game season).
- His third MVP came in 1965 as Brown rushed for 1544 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Peyton Manning – 5
No one comes close to Manning when it comes to how much the AP voters love him, winning for a fifth time, extending his own record, picking up his first MVP since leaving the Colts.
- The first one came in 2003, leading the NFL in accuracy (67%) and passing yards (4267) with 29 touchdown passes.
- The second came in 2004 (a shared award with Steve McNair), completing 67.6% of his passes for 4557 yards and a then NFL record of 49 passing touchdowns.
- The third came in 2008, with Manning completing 66.8% of his passes for 4002 yards and 27 touchdowns.
- The fourth came in 2009 (leading the Colts to the Super Bowl), completing 68.8% of his passes for 4500 yards and 33 touchdowns.
- He won his fifth for setting two major records in 2013, playing for the Broncos: Passing touchdowns (55) and passing yards (5477) in a season.