Amid all the fantasy football buzz around Detroit Lions rookie running back Jahmyr Gibbs, there were warning signs that he would probably be drafted too high. It was going to take a third-round, or maybe even a second-round, pick to get him in a typical 12-team league. But even in a PPR format, would he deliver on that ADP?
We know the story through four weeks. Gibbs is seeing a solid workload, if we look at history of rookie running backs through four games, but fantasy owners/analysts who expected more are deriding the Lions and even wishing injury on David Montgomery. Even in his best weeks, Gibbs has finished no better than around a RB2 in fantasy.
Week 5 brings a good matchup against the Carolina Panthers, who have the league's 27th-ranked run defense, are allowing 4.7 yards per carry (4.9 yards per carry to running backs) and the fourth-most fantasy points to running backs (Yahoo!, 0.5-point PPR).
So even if the game script (with the Lions as sizeable favorites) favors Montgomery, there's plenty of hypothetical room for Gibbs to eat too, right? Well...
Fantasy Football: Late injury makes this week's decision on Jahmyr Gibbs easy
The Lions have a pretty lengthy injury report this week. A notable Friday addition was Gibbs, listed as questionable with a hamstring injury after practicing fully all week beforehand. Of eight players listed as questionable, as an obvious nod to his fresh injury, he is the only one who didn't practice fully on Friday.
So even if Gibbs plays on Sunday, how many snaps will he play? If he aggravates the injury, he'll surely be taken out of the game and not return. A new late-week injury is never a good thing.
Gibbs has created quandaries for his fantasy owners. Start him (however risky it might be)? Bench him, and probably let him have a big game on the bench before considering starting him again? Sell low in a trade, and just be done worrying about it?
But this week, the fantasy football decision on Gibbs is easy for those who are afflicted with it. Bench him.
Update: Gibbs has been downgraded to doubtful for Sunday's game. Makes the fantasy lineup decision a no-brainer then.