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 2015 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
1Kevin Harvick$10,600
2Carl Edwards$10,300
3Jimmie Johnson$10,000
4Kyle Busch$11,000
5Kurt Busch$9,100

1. Kevin Harvick ($10,600) – Old faithful is number one, again. Kyle Busch broke our hearts at Fontana, surprised us at Martinsville, and then fell again at Bristol. Meanwhile, Kevin Harvick has always been there for us. Harvick ran 79 fast laps at Bristol and has 80 fantasy points or more in 5 races this season. (7.6 fppk)

2. Carl Edwards ($10,300) – The key to winning the the Sprint Cup Championship is consistently grabbing top 10s and winning a couple races here and there. That’s exactly what Carl Edwards is doing. Edwards has been around or over value in 7 of 8 races this season. (7.4 fppk)

3. Jimmie Johnson ($10,000) – Unscheduled green flag pit stops are fatal at short tracks. If it’s early in a race, cautions can resuscitate your chances. That wasn’t the case for Jimmie. As far as racing goes, he and his car look fine going into Richmond. (5.6 fppk)

4. Kyle Busch ($11,000) – Let’s not forget who we are talking about here. Rowdy is an all or nothing driver. In 2008, he had 8 wins and was the top seed entering the Chase. When the Chase was over, he was in 10th place! (6.7 fppk)

5. Kurt Busch ($9,100) – Nobody said it was easy. Busch started from the back after the Junior debacle. Bristol is notorious for its passing difficulty, but Busch worked his way through the entire field, led some laps, and finished 3rd. (4.9 fppk)

RankDriverSalary
6Dale Earnhardt Jr.$9,300
7Brad Keselowski$9,700
8Martin Truex Jr.$8,500
9Brian Vickers$6,600
10Joey Logano$10,200

6. Dale Earnhardt Jr. ($9,300) – It’s not that Junior can’t lead laps, but it’s hard to get out front starting outside of the top 10. On the other hand, Junior is a great fantasy play because he qualifies poorly. You can’t have your cake and eat it, too. (5.6 fppk)

7. Brad Keselowski ($9,700) – Bristol is a beast. Keselowski had as good a car as anybody, but he could not survive the beating and banging of the arena. Keselowski is the early favorite to score big points at Richmond. (4.3 fppk)

8. Martin Truex Jr. ($8,500) – If you had a loose wheel at Bristol, you lost. Truex had a good car, but an unscheduled pit stop and a poor pit stop prevented Truex from fighting for the win. (5.0 fppk)

9. Brian Vickers ($6,600) – Finding value can be tough. Fortunately for us, there is one place to turn for a cheap and confident pick – the 14 car. It’s not just value, Vickers races well at flat tracks. His last two visits to Richmond resulted in top 15s. (4.8 fppk)

10. Joey Logano ($10,200) – Edwards and Junior will receive all of the praise this week, but Logano was the real star. Logano had unscheduled pit stop (vibration), a pit penalty, and his battery died late in the race, but he still finished 10th. (4.3 fppk)

RankDriverSalary
11Ryan Blaney$6,800
12Denny Hamlin$10,400
13Austin Dillon$7,800
14Aric Almirola$6,300
15Chase Elliott$8,800

11. Ryan Blaney ($6,800) – Edwards and Harvick ran inside the top 15 at Bristol for 100% of the race. Who was the next best? Ryan Blaney ran inside the top 15 for 93.6% of the race. (3.1 fppk)

12. Denny Hamlin ($10,400)JGR, the Bristol favorites, really let us down last week. Hamlin had a car capable of winning, but after two wrecks, he was toast. Hamlin dominated Richmond, his home track, early in his career, but over the last 6, he’s averaging an 18th place finish. (3.3 fppk)

13. Austin Dillon ($7,800) – The 3 car has cooled off a little. Add in his new middle tier salary and it’s hard to play Dillon. If Dillon qualifies poorly, then he’s in play. (4.5 fppk)

14. Aric Almirola ($6,300) – This might be it for Almirola in the rankings. The 43 car was a safe pick last season, but now he’s living of his past reputation. Almirola has wrecked twice in the last 3 races. In his defense, Martinsville and Bristol are hairy races. (3.0 fppk)

15. Chase Elliott ($8,800) – It’s hard to pick Elliott because he doesn’t lead laps and run fast laps. It should not be this way;. Elliot has back-to-back top 5s and 5 tops 10s this season. This doesn’t feel like a rookie. This isn’t the salary of a rookie. (3.7 fppk)

RankDriverSalary
16Matt Kenseth$10,100
17Clint Bowyer$7,200
18AJ Allmendinger$6,900
19Ryan Newman$7,400
20Landon Cassill$5,600

16. Matt Kenseth ($10,100) – When it comes to Richmond, Kenseth has the best numbers (6 top 10s in the last 7 Richmond races). His past isn’t the problem; it’s his present. The 3.2 fppk is a problem. (3.2 fppk)

17. Clint Bowyer ($7,200) – The move to HScott Motorsports hasn’t been easy, but at short tracks, Bowyer has a chance. Bowyer’s track history held true at Bristol last week. If the trend continues, he’s a top 10 driver at Richmond. (3.7 fppk)

18. AJ Allmendinger ($6,900) – Bristol was a rough fantasy day for The Dinger, but he raced well. His average running position was 16th and he had a 90.3 driver rating. (5.1 fppk)

19. Ryan Newman ($7,400)DFS NASCAR Rule: “RCR cars are safe plays, if they qualify 15th or worse.” Newman quietly finished inside the top 10 and scored 43 fantasy points. He’s the typical cash game play. (3.7 fppk)

20. Landon Cassill ($5,600) – Furniture Row and Landon Cassill are starting to click. It will be interesting to see how good Cassill can be on a competitive small team. Cassil is averaging a 25th place finish and has the 11th best fppk. This is the safest $5k-range pick at the moment. (4.5 fppk)