Rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for that day. The ordering is not based on highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by value of each driver.
1. Kevin Harvick ($11,400) – His salary is on the rise, but DFS players get what they pay for with Harvick. This is the best driver with best car in NASCAR every week.
2. Joey Logano ($10,400) – Daily Fantasy NASCAR contests are won by picking drivers that lead laps. Drivers have to run up front to lead laps and that’s what Logano does. His 15 top 5s ranks 2nd behind Harvick.
3. Carl Edwards ($9,600) – Since a wreck at Daytona in July, Edwards has 7 top 10s in 8 races (13th being the worst finish). Over the last 4 races, Edwards has averaged 60 fppg.
4. Dale Earnhardt Jr. ($8,400) – He’s not the #1 guy on a DFS roster, but he easily scores #2 driver points with an affordable price tag. His average fantasy points score of 48 is only 5 points less than the second highest average.
5. Aric Almirola ($6,100) – Is the Cuban Missile a top 5 driver? Not even close, but he is a top 15 driver priced like a top 35 driver.
6. Denny Hamlin ($9,500) – The Virginia native has three top 5s in a row. This week he returns to his home track in Richmond. This JGR driver’s salary salary has not budged.
7. Kyle Busch ($10,800) – The hot streak is over. Rowdy dominated Bristol, but he always does. At the other four race Kyle has been good, but not the killer, DFS players expect.
8. Brad Keselowski ($11,200) – The Penske #2 has been one of the hottest cars this summer. At Darlington, he put up his third 100 pt performance this summer. The problem is that DFS players will now have to pay up for the best.
9. Ryan Newman ($7,700) – No thrills here. Newman is cheap and consistently finishes inside the top 15 (average finish of 14th over 25 races).
10. Paul Menard ($6,700) – The RCR veteran could be ranked higher based on his price, but Menard had an off week at Darlington. The real worry for Menard is that he will be playing it safe at Richmond to solidify his chase spot.
11. Matt Kenseth ($10,100) – This is the one JGR driver that’s cooled off over the last two races. His salary remains high as it should, but their are better plays right now.
12. Clint Bowyer ($7,500) – At his price, Bowyer only needs a top 15 to return value. Bowyer has 4 top 10s in his last 6 races and needs a top 15 to safely qualify for the playoffs.
13. Kurt Busch ($9,800) – Darlington was a step in the right direction for Kurt. He had the car, but just couldn’t get passed Keselowski. His price is still a little too steep.
14. Martin Truex Jr. ($8,800) – At some point, the Furniture Row team has to start worrying. At the beginning of summer, Truex was a favorite to win the 2015 championship. Over the last 10 races, Truex is sinking with an average finish of 20th.
15. Jimmie Johnson ($8,900) – It’s unfathomable that the 6 time champion would drop to 15th, but he’s just not producing. His salary has dropped, but not as much as others.
16. Jamie McMurray ($8,200) – The last two races have been solid fantasy days for Jamie Mac (46 and 36 points). His price drops further this week, but he’s only in play in GPPs, if he qualifies poorly.
17. Kasey Kahne ($7,800) – This just hasn’t been his year and the recent Hendrick struggles make matters worse. Kahne will be racing for the win this weekend, so he can make the playoffs. Unfortunately, he’s been doing that for weeks.
18. Austin Dillon ($6,600) – The price is right, and Dillon will tempt many DFS players this weekend. Dillon is a top 20 driver and has raced well since Slugger Labbe took over as crew chief. The problem is that Dillon’s average starting position of 16th rules out place differential points.
19. Tony Stewart ($7,200) – Why not? Stewart is still a great driver and is a part of one of the best teams in NASCAR. He’s been racing around the top 20 over the last month. At his price, it will be tough to fade Smoke.
20. Jeff Gordon ($8,500) – Earnhardt Jr. is $100 cheaper and averages 19 points more each race. Gordon is struggling. Hendrick is struggling. He’s a place differential play until his salary drops below $8,000.