FanPost

A note on Detroit's running game against the Bears

This will be a relatively short fanpost, but I hope it will be helpful to some of you who worry about Jahvid Best's performance against the Bears on Monday night.

Going into the game, the Bears were a middling run defense, ranking 15th in DVOA against the run. The Lions were ranked 30th in run offense, and Best's big fantasy numbers have been mostly due to his assistance in the passing attack that Detroit executes very effectively. So what happened? How did Best explode for 163 yards on just 12 carries? Was he really that good?

I was going over the play-by-play, and this is what I found: two big runs, and not much. Here's a run-down of Best's runs in the game:

1) 1 yard on 1-10
2) 1 yard on 1-10
3) 10 yards on 1-5
4) 3 yards receiving on 1-10
5) 3 yards receiving on 2-9
6) 1 yard on 1-10
7) 88 yards on 1-10, TD
8) 11 yards on 1-10
9) 2 yards receiving on 3-14
10) No gain on 1-10
11) 43 yards on 1-10
12) 15 yards on 3-9
13) -5 yards on 1-6
14) -3 yards on 2-11
15) 1 yard on 3-14

That amounts to 10/15 unsuccessful plays, a 33% success rate. Besides his two bombs for 88 yards and 43 yards, he went 40 yards on 13 rushes and receptions, good for a 3.07 yds/attempt. Best also managed 3 yards or less on 10 of his 15 attempts.

This is boom or bust at it's worst, inflating total numbers during a very mediocre game. Other rushers on the Lions went 7 rushes for 18 yards. There is no doubt that Best has explosiveness, and we should not discount his ability to outrun almost anyone on the field. However, with our front seven and overall awesomeness stopping the run, I think the Lions will have trouble hitting 50 yards on the ground next week without any need for stacking the box.

Of course, it is the Lions' passing attack that has been winning them games, and Calvin Johnson is, as always, a force to be reckoned with. But a one-dimensional offense is far easier to contain.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors.

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