Patriots

Bedard: Patriots awards and superlatives for first quarter of the season

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(Getty Images)

Normally we don't give out many awards — maybe at the midway point and at the conclusion of the season — but with this season being so unique, we thought it might be a worthwhile exercise to fill in some of the information gap this season.

With no offseason practices, a shorter training camp and no exhibition games, there was much less data available to form some opinions on players. Now that the Patriots have basically concluded their exhibition season — even more of a reason not to overrate anything (positive or negative) in the first four games for any team in the NFL — we should have a better grasp about the state of the Patriots.

So let's give out some awards on both ends of the spectrum (best/worst) assess where the Patriots currently are, and where they could be going this season.

Most Valuable Player: Lawrence Guy

This was probably going to be Cam Newton before the Raiders game and missing the Chiefs showdown — and you could still make a convincing argument for him — but it has to be Guy at this point. He's the only legitimate interior defensive lineman on the roster who can stop the run, and his ability to do that and take up blockers has allowed the Patriots to get away with playing the Lollipop Guild of defensive fronts because they don't have any linebackers. If he didn't have a monster game in KC, then the Patriots don't get the chance to play with seven and eight defensive backs to frustrate Patrick Mahomes. Now with Byron Cowart on the Covid-19 list, Guy is a kingdom unto himself. It doesn't get more valuable than that.

Least Valuable Player: Beau Allen