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. Kyle Busch ($10,800) – He just keeps winning (4 wins in 5 races). Let his price go up; Kyle is scoring fast lap and lead lap points, too.
*2. Kevin Harvick ($11,700)* – Two weeks in a row, Harvick’s done everything right, but in the end, Kyle Busch catches a break and wins. It’s tough if you’re a Harvick fan, but if you just picked him in DFS you are really happy with two big time scores in a row.
*3. Brad Keselowski ($9,400)* – It was a little different this week. At Kentucky and New Hampshire, BK ran out front and piled up fast lap and lead lap points. At Indianapolis, Brad worked his way through the entire field and was a bad restart away from cracking the 100 point mark for the third week in a row.
*4. Joey Logano ($9,400)* – Logano-bot is a top 5 machine. It’s disappointing that he’s not leading laps and a running a ton of fast laps. It also hurts DFS players when Logano qualifies so highly, but the fact of the matter is – Logano is a safe pick to finish in the top 5 each week.
*5. Matt Kenseth ($9,000)* – He’s hum drum, but he chalks up a top 10 every week and has a knack for scoring place differential points. Kenseth scored the 5th most points at Indianapolis (58.5 pts).
*6. Dale Earnhardt Jr. ($9,200)* – Indianapolis wasn’t kind to Dale, but it wasn’t a disaster. The silver lining is that Junior’s odds to win at Pocono have dropped, so he should see less ownership. Junior has scored inside the top 10 in 6 of 9 DraftKings races this year.
*7. Kurt Busch ($10,100)* – He’s cooled off, but he’s still a top 10 car. The only reason to pay for Kurt is place differential. He’s not a front runner at the moment.
*8. Ryan Newman ($7,600)* – It’s almost a no brainer. If Newman qualifies poorly, then you plug him because he’s a safe place differential play. He’s scored sizable place differential in 5 DraftKings’ contests this year.
*9. Martin Truex Jr. ($10,300)* – Just like that, the Truex concerns are quelled. The recent slip has to be credited to track types, not driver or team issues. The problem for DFS players is that they will never get a Truex with a discount price tag again.
*10. Carl Edwards ($8,500)* – He can win; He can move through the field, but he cannot dominate a race. At his price, DFS players do not need a dominant performance. Winning the pole two weeks in a row has not helped Carl’s value.
*11. Jimmie Johnson ($10,400)* – At his price, DFS players need more consistency. Jimmie did not race poorly at Indy, but his pit road strategy did not work and he was mired in traffic at the end of the race.
*12. Denny Hamlin ($9,300)* – JGR is on a roll. Sure, a lot of credit goes to Kyle Busch, but Hamlin is running well, too (3 top 5s in the last 4 races). Hamlin is great on any flat track (Martinsville, New Hampshire, Pocono, and Indy).
*13. Paul Menard ($7,400)* – The 11th place starting position was too much for most DFS players, but Menard finished 14th. Once again, he was a top 15 fantasy NASCAR driver at a price below $9,000.
*14. Jamie McMurray ($8,100)* – He’s a top 15 driver, but he doesn’t lead laps or run fast laps. Jamie Mac is only a place differential play.
*15. Kasey Kahne ($8,700)* – The box score doesn’t always tell the tale. Kahne finished 24th but ran inside the teens for the majority of the race. However, the box score determines DFS winners. Kahne’s got some work to do.
*16. Austin DIllon ($7,500)* – When the 3 car got hit with back to back pit road penalties, many DFS players were tearing up their tickets. Dillon didn’t give up and flirted with a top 10 finish, but the last restart didn’t go his way. All in all, this was a gutsy performance by Dillon.
*17. Clint Bowyer ($7,700)* – He started in the top 10 and finished in the top 10. Bowyer scored the 11th most fantasy points at Indy (37.75). The MWR Toyotas looked strong all weekend.
*18. Aric Almirola ($6,300)* – Wrecks are going to happen. Almirola has an average finish of 18.6; that’s a steal at a sub $7,000 salary. Practice restraint when Almirola qualifies near the teens.
*19. Jeff Gordon ($9,300)* – Inevitably DFS players will look at his past Pocono statistics and say, “this is the week.” Gordon was racing well at The Brickyard, but he got taken about by another car. Luck aside, Gordon isn’t really wowing anyone at the moment.
*20. Kyle Larson ($8,300)* – Your 2015 Dark Horse has slid back into the top 20. When he qualifies in the top 10, it’s all risk and no reward. Larson can race, but please use for place differential purposes only.