David Montgomery has been a fantasy dud for much of the season, but in the last two weeks, his fortunes have turned around. In Week 8, he rushed 27 times for 135 yards and a touchdown and caught 4-of-5 passes for 15 yards against the Chargers. In Week 9, he rushed 14 times for 40 yards and two touchdowns and caught 3-of-4 targets for 36 yards against the Eagles.
The nine targets over the last two games are probably more encouraging than the touchdowns, as we know he was the goal-line back, but getting work through the air could be a massive boost to his fantasy floor.
Chicago’s receiving specialist out of the backfield is Tarik Cohen, whose fantasy viability rests on receptions in PPR leagues. So far, he’s had three games over six receptions and five games under three. If you could have predicted the higher end reception games, he would have given you between 10-13 fantasy points in PPR leagues. With the five low-end reception games, he hasn’t topped ten fantasy points.
Fantasy football analysis: Chicago Bears RBs David Montgomery, Tarik Cohen
This week the Detroit Lions visit Soldier Field along with their awful defense. Through eight games, Detroit has given up the most fantasy points to opposing running backs. Over the last three games opposing backs have totaled 565 yards and six touchdowns. They’ve faced a gauntlet of good running backs in that stretch, with Dalvin Cook, Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs all putting up big numbers.
Montgomery isn’t in that group of backs, but he is going to get plenty of work as the team tries to hide their quarterback Mitch Trubisky. Last week Montgomery saw 17 touches and the week before he had 31. In Week 7, he had a season-low four touches, but coach Matt Nagy chastised himself and went all-in on him the following week.
Nagy wants to run the ball, and the Lions are extremely poor at stopping the run. You do the math. Of course, the game script could flip if the Lions were to get out to a quick lead. Thankfully for Montgomery, the Bears defense has given up just 18 points per game, sixth-best in the league. Chicago is favored by three points, and this game has the second-lowest over/under of the week, which points to plenty of opportunities for Montgomery to carry the ball.
Cohen, on the other hand, might continue to see his limited usage, especially if Montgomery continues to see an uptick in targets. To reach his ceiling, the Lions would need to buck the scoring trend and get a significant lead. Even with a late lead, I’d still expect Montgomery to be involved, but Cohen’s snaps would get an uptick.
Traditional Fantasy Start/Sit Recommendation
Sit Cohen in all but the deepest PPR leagues.
DraftKings DFS Recommendation
Montgomery is a strong play this week, as his price hasn’t caught up to his usage over the last two games. At $5,300, you can expect 20 touches in an easy matchup.
Tarik Cohen sits at $4,200, and I wouldn’t play him at $3,000. He has yet to show any real upside, and his floor is too low to take a risk on.