Fantasy News & Analysis

Immediate fantasy football takeaways from NFL Week 9 Monday Night Football

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Pat Freiermuth (88) reacts after scoring a touchdown against the Chicago Bears during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Chicago Bears 29-27 on Monday Night Football.

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The Steelers took the lead on the first drive and seemed to be in good position all game until the Bears scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Ben Roethlisberger led the team to a game-clinching field goal. Rookies Najee Harris and Pat Freiermuth combined for three touchdowns.

For Chicago, the big news was David Montgomery‘s return as the lead back. Their offense played better as the game went on, but it was too little too late.

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Related content for you: NFL Week 10 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Targets: All league sizes & scoring types via Andrew Erickson

Table Notes
  • Snaps include plays called back due to penalties like offensive holding or defensive pass interference. The other three stats have these plays removed.
  • Targets may differ from official NFL sources. The most likely discrepancy would be from a clear thrown away pass, where the NFL may give the target to the nearest receiver, while this data will not.
  • Carries are only on designed plays. Quarterback scrambles won’t count for the total number of carries in the game.

Chicago Bears at Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Pat Freiermuth: 5 receptions, 43 yards, 2 TD (20.7% threat rate)
  • Darnell Mooney: 3 receptions, 41 yards (18.5 aDOT), 1 receiving TD, 1 carry, 15 yards, 1 rushing TD
Pittsburgh Steelers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
Diontae Johnson 65 34 7 2
Chase Claypool 58 25 5 2
James Washington 41 24 3 2
Ray-Ray McCloud III 26 11 1 0
Cody White 2 1 0 0
Pat Freiermuth 51 26 6 0
Zach Gentry 37 9 0 0
Kevin Rader 1 1 1 0
Najee Harris 59 23 3 21
Kalen Ballage 7 6 1 0
Benny Snell Jr. 6 3 0 2
Total 72 34 28 31
Chicago Bears Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
Darnell Mooney 50 33 6 1
Allen Robinson II 48 27 6 0
Marquise Goodwin 32 23 3 0
Damiere Byrd 24 19 0 0
Jakeem Grant 1
Cole Kmet 48 28 8 0
Jesse James 22 5 0 0
Jimmy Graham 18 7 3 0
Jesper Horsted 1 1 0 0
David Montgomery 53 27 2 13
Khalil Herbert 10 2 0 4
Ryan Nall 2 0 0 0
Total 62 37 28 21


Start David Montgomery and bench Khalil Herbert: Montgomery was put on the Bears' active roster Monday after missing over a month of football. He returned to his every-down role despite Herbert's impressive play recently. The veteran played every offensive snap in the first quarter and just occasionally took plays off to rest throughout the rest of the game. Chicago ran a few plays out of the wildcat offense, which put both backs on the field.

Montgomery had two top-10 finishes in the first four weeks and should be an every-week starter going forward. Herbert can be cut in smaller leagues and benched in larger ones. It’s unlikely Montgomery’s role changes unless he suffers another injury or his quality of play declines.

Add Pat Freiermuth: The second-round rookie has been a fantasy star in his last three games. He only caught five passes Monday but was able to score two touchdowns. His rise coincides with Eric Ebron‘s injury. The Steelers were using a tight-end rotation before and still rotated between Baby Gronk and Zach Gentry. Freiermuth saw more routes while Gentry was used more in run-blocking situations.

Other tight ends in Mike Tomlin’s offense have become every-down players, so there's a chance Freiermuth’s value could rise if he can earn that role. Until then, his play from one week to another could be volatile due to limited offensive snaps.

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Buy low on the Steelers wide receivers: The Steelers relied heavily on the run game and when they passed, they spread the ball around. This led to relatively small performances by both Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool. Pittsburgh still has a relatively easy schedule remaining with games against the Bengals, Vikings, Titans and Browns. They should rebound, especially when the Steelers need them more.

It’s worth noting that Claypool was seen hobbling on the sideline late in the game. If the injury causes him to miss time, then both James Washington and Ray-Ray McCloud would see a significant increase in snaps, and both would be waiver-wire targets in deeper leagues.

Add Cole Kmet in deeper leagues: The Bears tight end has been more involved in recent weeks. This was his fourth-straight game with five or more targets, which led to a career-high 87 receiving yards. He still hasn’t scored a touchdown yet this season, so he’s still probably not a viable option in most leagues. It’s still good to see a young player trending in the right direction.

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