Willis will be the popular choice, but as far as MVP is concerned, there are other options. He is the best at what he does, but the defense would still function without him, although it obviously wouldn't be quite as good. The man is a tackle machine, not a game-changing playmaker. Dimwits will construe this as hating, but what's new? Willis is my favorite defensive player in the league and I am in no way hating on the man, but I think valid cases can be made for 2 others - Justin Smith and Frank Gore. Remember, an MVP isn't always the most talented player.
We saw how crappy the defense played when Justin Smith was ejected from the Chargers game. The line was totally ineffective, which resulted in the rest of the defense collapsing. We knew his worth when he first got here and he only elevated that in '09 and '10. Willis is the most talented overall player on the defense as far as abilities for their respective positions, but Justin Smith is the motor and the true heart of the defense. He's also more of a "leader" than Willis is and seems to be more of a player that others "look up to."
As for Frank Gore, if I really have to explain this to anyone here, there's something wrong with you - or you just don't understand football. He's the heart and soul of the offense and has been since 2006. He's the only focus of any opposing defense, gets very little help from the offensive line, play-calling, coaching, etc... and somehow, he still produces. The offense is far worse without him. When I think San Francisco 49ers, I think of Frank Gore first and foremost.
Most talented/Best player - Patrick Willis
Offensive MVP - Frank Gore
Defensive MVP - Justin Smith
Overall MVP - Frank Gore
That's how I see it. Anyone is welcome to disagree. I truly believe all 3 are deserving, though.
[ Edited by 49erRider on May 25, 2011 at 15:16:54 ]