Death, Deflategate, and a Cubs World Series: 2016 in Sports

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While the NFL remains America's barely challenged fulcrum of obsession, 2016 did little to redirect the Late Days Of Rome narrative that has settled around the league in recent years. With domestic abuse scandals, ever-accumulating fears about the effects of brain injuries, and an unprecedented slide in TV ratings over the past months, the sports world's most impregnable juggernaut suddenly feels strangely vulnerable. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is a feckless autocrat who has embarrassed the league again and again with his unfathomably poor judgment and reckless pursuit of vain personal vendettas. In so many ways, it's like a preview of the next eight years. And yet, who can turn away? Last year's Super Bowl champion Broncos were a feel-good story, with Peyton Manning grasping one last ring, even as his broken-down body made him a poignant shell of his former self. The current season finds the previously suspended Tom Brady on a kill-‘em-all revenge tour, a staggering rookie QB/RB tandem at Dallas, and a late-surging Aaron Rodgers threatening to swashbuckle his way through the entire ordeal. I'm not missing that. Just when I thought I was out...

MVP: Tom Brady

Runner Up: Von Miller