Best NFL player props for Chicago Bears vs Detroit Lions: A feast for Montgomery
While a lot of Americans circle dinner time as their favorite moment on Thanksgiving, for me, it’s 12:30 PM EST. Why? Because that’s kickoff of the first of the three game NFL slate. This year, the Bears and Lions will go toe-to-toe in an NFC North clash. Before I get to my player prop of the game, be sure to check out our full game picks and analysis.
This game is not too appetizing on paper. Bears rookie quarterback Justin Fields is out, and the Lions will be making a gametime call on their quarterback, Jared Goff. With all of the uncertainty, player props can be a bit trickier to navigate. However, there is one player I expect to shine on turkey day, and I expect his team to feed him well (pun intended).
David Montgomery (CHI) over 17.5 rush attempts (-114)
Line available at FanDuel at time of publishing.
Montgomery has cemented himself as the unquestioned bellcow in the Bears rushing attack. In the two games since he’s returned from injury, Montgomery has played 90% of the snaps, and handled 85% of the running back rush attempts. However, in looking at his game logs the third year back has only eclipsed this line twice in his 6 games played.
So, why am I on the over?
The winless Lions defense is bad, period. They rank 29th in rush defense DVOA and 28th in pass defense DVOA. Teams have been able to run their offense with little interruption against Detroit. And when intended, running backs have racked up the carries. The Lions allow 26.1 carries per game to opposing backs, the second highest in the NFL.
Since Week 4, when Montgomery picked up 23 carries in their first matchup, Alexander Mattison (25), Joe Mixon (18), Najee Harris (26), and Nick Chubb (22) all were heavily utilized against the Lions.
Do the Bears want to run?
The short answer is yes. Chicago has not found themselves in too many games with neutral or positive games-cripts, but they want the ball in Montgomery’s hands. Dating back to Week 6 of last season, when Montgomery took over as the bell-cow, Montgomery averaged 17.5 carries per game. However, removing those matchups in which the Bears lost by more than one score, that average bumps up to 18.8.
Against the Lions, with either a hobbled Jared Goff or backup Tim Boyle at the helm, the Bears have a strong chance to control game flow. The Lions are one of the few teams with worse time of possession stats than the Bears. Plus. with Andy Dalton starting for Chicago the threat of quarterback designed runs are removed.
This game is as good as any to get the Iowa State product the ball. I project 26 rushing plays for the Bears, which would put Montgomery’s carries right at 21.
Be sure to check out our full game preview for Chicago Bears vs Detroit Lions.