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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.

(fppk = average fantasy points per $1,000 of salary. The typical median fppk for a 2016 race was in the 3s. Plate tracks tend to be lower and short tracks tend to run higher due to the amount of laps.)

RankDriverSalary
1Brad Keselowski$10,500
2Martin Truex, Jr.$10,200
3Kevin Harvick$10,000
4Kyle Busch$9,900
5Chase Elliott$9,500

1. Brad Keselowski ($10,500) – Texas is the third intermediate track race of the season. In the first two, Keselowski scored the second most fantasy points in each race. Speed does not disappear. (6.5 fppk)

2. Martin Truex, Jr. ($10,200) – Last season, Truex was a monster at intermediate tracks. The 78 car is fast, again. Truex didn’t have the greatest day at Atlanta, but that was Kevin Harvick’s race. At the next intermediate track race, Truex scored the most fantasy points. (6.3 fppk)

3. Kevin Harvick ($10,000) – Who would have thought that the Stewart-Haas Fords would be less consistent than the Roush Fords? That’s likely momentary. Harvick was great at Atlanta and caught a bad break at Las Vegas. This could easily be a Harvick week. (3.8 fppk)

4. Kyle Busch ($9,900) – In a post-race interview, Kyle Busch complained about his Atlanta race car. The next week, he was a top-five driver until he tangled with Joey Logano. At Texas, Kyle Busch has five consecutive top-five finishes. (5.5 fppk)

5. Chase Elliott ($9,500) – After Martinsville (third place), if you’re not an Elliott believer, I’m not sure what else he can do. If I had to pick a Hendrick driver to win the championship, Elliott’s my guy. He’s finished inside the top-five in fantasy points in each of the last five races this season. (5.9 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
6Jimmie Johnson$9,700
7Joey Logano$9,800
8Kyle Larson$10,300
9Dale Earnhardt, Jr.$8,500
10Matt Kenseth$9,300

6. Jimmie Johnson ($9,700) – It’s common to ignore Jimmie Johnson’s track history each week. He’s great everywhere, but he’s next level great at Texas. Johnson has won five of the last nine Texas races. (3.7 fppk)

7. Joey Logano ($9,800) – In five of six races this season, Logano has scored over 48 fantasy points. He’s finished with a top-five DFS score in each of the last two weeks. Last fall at Texas, Logano scored the most fantasy points. (5.1 fppk)

8. Kyle Larson ($10,300) – Sometimes a team just doesn’t have the best car. That’s what happened at Martinsville. Daily Fantasy NASCAR players could worry or they could look at his four finishes before Martinsville (second, second, second and first). (5.8 fppk)

9. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. ($8,500) – This has been a rough season for Junior (average finish of 25th), but Texas could be a rebound week. In the last four Texas races, Junior has finished sixth or better. (1.4 fppk)

10. Matt Kenseth ($9,300) – His West Coast worries are a distant memory. Kenseth rebounded with a ninth-place finish at Martinsville. He has finished inside the top 10 in both of his intermediate track races this season. (1.4 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
11Kurt Busch$8,000
12Jamie McMurray$8,300
13Denny Hamlin$9,000
14Erik Jones$7,600
15Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.$7,000

11. Kurt Busch ($8,000) – Add Martinsville to the list of races that Kurt Busch hasn’t finished this season. Somehow his price went up, but it’s still a very low price for a top-notch car at an intermediate track. (1.9 fppk)

12. Jamie McMurray ($8,300) – No one wants to spend over $8,000 of salary on Jamie McMurray, but look at the bright side. If you pick McMurray, he could be overlooked, and your lineup could separate itself from the rest in big tournaments. The Ganassi cars are fast this year. I look at McMurray as a discounted Larson. (2.5 fppk)

13. Denny Hamlin ($9,000) – Until Hamlin consistently performs at intermediate tracks, I think he’s only in play when he can score place differential points. You might think his sixth-place finish at Las Vegas is a step in the right direction, but his average running position was 13th. (2.2 fppk)

14. Erik Jones ($7,600) – A rookie who has five consecutive top-15 finishes to begin his Cup career (excluding the mayhem of Daytona). His fantasy imprint is limited because that’s where Jones qualifies. He’s proven to be a good cash game option, but he’s still a rookie. (4.0 fppk)

15. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($7,000) – Daily Fantasy NASCAR players will never feel comfortable rostering Stenhouse, but at this moment, right now, I think it is the safest. He’s running in the top 15 every week. Sure, he’s going to wreck occasionally, but the other times, he provides solid value. (4.1 fppk)


RankDriverSalary
16Ryan Newman$7,800
17Clint Bowyer$8,800
18Ryan Blaney$8,100
19Aric Almirola$6,400
20Austin Dillon$7,500

16. Ryan Newman ($7,800) – This is year three for the Fantasy NASCAR Rankings, and the weekly Newman blurb hasn’t changed once. He’s safe. He consistently finishes around 15th. His price never changes. He’s Ryan Newman. (3.5 fppk)

17. Clint Bowyer ($8,800) – If you played Bowyer last week, you might have been sweating a little while he was running in the teens. You shouldn’t have. Bowyer finishes better than where he races. He’s a good driver in a good car with a plan. (4.2 fppk)

18. Ryan Blaney ($8,100) – The problem with Blaney is that he qualifies fifth, but he isn’t a fifth-place driver. His car is fast, but after a full race, he’s 10th at best. Negative place differential points are detrimental in daily fantasy NASCAR. (4.4 fppk)

19. Aric Almirola ($6,400) – Last season was the first time Richard Petty Motorsports built their own chassis. They were bound to struggle. In season two, they’ve downsized to a much more manageable number of cars: one. It’s working; Almirola has four consecutive top-20 finishes. (5.5 fppk)

20. Austin Dillon ($7,500) – He’s trending in the right direction, but the Las Vegas race is a concern. The Atlanta race was ruined by a battery issue, but at Las Vegas, it was simply a bad car. Let’s hope RCR is better prepared for this intermediate track. (3.5 fppk)

 


I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is greenflagradio2) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.