Patience was certainly a great virtue for Jahmyr Gibbs' fantasy football owners. David Montgomery's injury absence for a couple games propelled him to finishes as a top-five running back in Week 7 and Week 8. When Montgomery returned in Week 10, it became three games in a row as a top-five fantasy running back.
So Gibbs' fantasy owners don't need anyone to say "start him in Week 11 against the Chicago Bears." Yes, the Bears' run defense has been '85 Bears-like lately, and they've allowed just 3.2 yards per carry for the season overall. But you're not benching Gibbs, or Montgomery for that matter.
A look at fantasy points allowed shows the Bears are in the bottom half of the league against running backs (12th-most points per game; Yahoo! scoring-0.5-point PPR). So the path opposing backs have taken to production is clear.
Fantasy Football Week 11: Jahmyr Gibbs will finish as the RB1 in PPR scoring
Not having their bye yet inflates the raw numbers a little, but here's what opposing running backs have done against the Bears through the air this season and where they rank.
- Receptions (60)-30th
- Targets (75)-30th
- Receiving yards (615)-32nd
- Yards per reception (10.3)-32nd
- Receiving TDs (5)-32nd
- Missed tackles as receivers (28)-32nd
Jeff Risdon of Lions Wire passed along notes about some Bears' defenders as pass defenders.
"Safeties Elijah Hicks and Jaquan Brisker each struggle in coverage against both TEs and RBs, but it’s most pronounced with LB Tremaine Edmunds. He’s bad at covering RBs, allowing a completion percentage over 90 percent— but even worse at tackling them after the catch. Both Edmunds (15%) and Hicks (30%) have very high missed tackle rates in the passing game."
Tremaine Edmunds is listed as questionable for Sunday's game due to a knee injury, so if he's out that may actually be a bad thing for Gibbs as a pass catcher. Then again, it probably won't really matter who's matched up against Gibbs out of the backfield. He's an automatic mismatch for whoever's trying to cover him.
Even if the Lions can't get a lot going on the ground Sunday, and that can be debated, Gibbs is lined up to take the fullest advantage of where the Bears just can't handle running backs. The path to finishing as the RB1 for the week in (at least) PPR scoring is paved.