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. The information is not developed or provided by NASCAR, Inc., or its affiliates.
1. Martin Truex Jr. ($11,500) – The #78 is fast every week, and he has the lead laps and fast laps to prove it. Since the launch of NASCAR at Draft Kings, Truex has been king. He’s has never won at Michigan, but you can safely lean on his 2015 stats.
2. Kevin Harvick ($13,900) – Harvick has experienced his normal measure of success with a handful of top 5s and 10s. At Michigan, he’s been the runner up four years in a row. He was the runner up at Pocono last week. The optimist says that’s good thing.
3. Dale Earnhardt Jr. ($11,900) – Junior has 2 wins at Michigan. His 2012 win broke a 143 race winless streak. This Hendrick Chevy has been fast and Junior is running for wins. Look for him to be aggressive at a track he loves and add to his 12 top 10’s.
4. Joey Logano ($11,200) – After the news dropped at Pocono about Logano starting in the back (gear change), a lot of NASCAR fantasy guys jumped ship. Logano proved those wrong as he ended up with a 4th place finish. Logano’s finished in the top 10 in each of the last 4 Michigan races with a driver rating of 125.0 over that span (ranks #1).
5. Jimmie Johnson ($13,000) – Charlotte – bad luck, Dover – win, Pocono – bad luck (but still a 3rd place finish – a bad week for the 48 is 3rd? Yes, it is.).. If the trend continues then this could be a really good week for JJ. It’s not the 48’s best track, but he does have ten top 10s and a win at Michigan.
6. Matt Kenseth ($11,000) – Last week, Kenseth proved that track history can be deceiving. Kenseth put up solid practice times, had a modest salary, and was starting 20th; it was too much to pass up on. He has 2 wins at Michigan and 18 top 10’s (4th among active drivers).
7. Kurt Busch (12,300) – Kurt took the pole at Pocono. This led us to believe he would lead a lot of laps, but that wasn’t in the cards. 2003 and 2007 mark his last wins at Michigan. Anybody in the same garage as Kevin Harvick has the chance to be good week in and week out.
8. Kyle Larson ($10,100) – It seems that the kid has turned a corner this year. He’s been very fast in the last two races. Larson has a limited track history at Michigan and unfortunately ended the 2014 race in a blaze (literally) of glory. He has 2 top 10’s in the Xfinity Series at Michigan.
9. Kasey Kahne ($10,800) – This will continue to be your bottom shelf Hendrick engine play. Unless you really want to push it, and go for the cereal in the bag (Danica and Tony). The number is 8. Kahne is eighth in the 2015 standings, and has 8 top 5s at Michigan.
10. Brad Keselowski ($11,300) – BK continues to disappoint at his price level. His cars aren’t quite up to speed in practice. During the race, BK will use strategy to move up, but eventually, better cars outrun him.
11. Jeff Gordon ($11,100) – When it comes to Top 5s at Michigan, Gordon is the king. We’re not talking about stats from 20 years ago either. He won from the pole at Michigan last fall with 48 fast laps and 68 laps led (86.5 fantasy points).
12. Greg Biffle ($9,400) – When a big time driver qualifies near 30th, it’s always a DFS boon. The Bif is getting better each week, and Michigan is one of his best tracks.
13. Kyle Busch ($10,800) – He’s been good in all three races this year, but he got a little greedy at Dover and he wrecked. With a price drop, look for KB to back in play.
14. Carl Edwards ($10,200) – JGR has the cars, but the drivers haven’t consistently done their part. Carl has finished inside the Top 10 in 71% of his races at Michigan (ranks #1).
15. Denny Hamlin ($10,900) – The 11 finished 10th on Sunday, but I don’t believe he was mentioned on the broadcast once. It’s been a ho-hum year for Hamlin and with the 6th highest salary, there are better places to spend.
16. Jamie McMurray ($9,900 ) – With ten top 15s on the year, McMurray is always in contention. Due to his salary, Jamie Mac goes under owned each week and is a great contrarian play.
17.Paul Menard ($9,700) – It was a rough week for the 27, but he’ll turn it around. He’s been strong in 2015 and Michigan is a good track for Menard.
18.Ryan Newman ($9,600) – You can’t predict wrecks. Newman was the safest pick of the week and a lock for 50/50s, but he got wrecked near the end. The 31 team caught a lot of breaks earlier this year, but now it seems his luck has run out.
19. Aric Almirola ($8,300) – The RPM Fords looked bad all weekend and the race was no different. It’s just one race. Overall, 2015 has been good to Almirola. The 43 is still the safest play at the bottom end of the $8,000 range.
20.Tony Stewart ($9,500) – Is he that good this year? Not even close, but due to poor qualifying efforts, Smoke has put up solid fantasy points two weeks in a row. It looks like he is finally adjusting to the new rules package.