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.)

1Brad Keselowski$9,700
2Joey Logano$10,100
3Kyle Larson$10,300
4Kevin Harvick$10,400
5Chase Elliott$9,500

1. Brad Keselowski ($9,700) – In 2014, Brad Keselowski won at Richmond. However, the more revealing stat is his average running position of fifth at Richmond over the last six races. That’s the best at Richmond. I expect to see him near the front this weekend. (5.2 fppk)

2. Joey Logano ($10,100) – It looked like last week was going to be his DFS breakout. It didn’t happen, but with a score of 75 fantasy points at Bristol, Logano is as close as possible to that breakout week. Over the last six Richmond races, Logano has the fourth-best average running position. (5.5 fppk)

3. Kyle Larson ($10,300) – Last year, Larson invented the high line at Richmond. That’s what he does. Like most tracks, Larson’s average running position has improved every season to the point where we expect him to lead laps each weekend. (6.7 fppk)

4. Kevin Harvick ($10,400) – Last week was good, but daily fantasy NASCAR players expect great. That’s what they were served weekly form 2015-2016. You can feed the Salisbury steak to the dog, where’s the Porterhouse? At Richmond over the last six races, Harvick is a close second to Keselowski in average running position. (4.4 fppk)

5. Chase Elliott ($9,500) – After seven weeks, Elliott finally failed to finish with a top-five fantasy score. It wasn’t a total failure, he scored the 11th-most fantasy points and finished seventh at Bristol. (5.8 fppk)

6Martin Truex, Jr.$9,100
7Jimmie Johnson$9,900
8Kyle Busch$10,600
9Jamie McMurray$7,800
10Denny Hamlin$9,300

6. Martin Truex, Jr. ($9,100) – Every time the track history states that Truex struggles at a track, he proves that track history doesn’t matter. He had been terrible at Bristol for years, then he scored 104.5 fantasy points last week. (6.9 fppk)

7. Jimmie Johnson ($9,900) – It’s not that Jimmie Johnson doesn’t want to be out front the entire race, it’s that he’s horrible at qualifying. He admits his weakness every week during qualifying. He’ll never blow the fantasy scoreboard up, but he can score points by working his way to the front. (5.3 fppk)

8. Kyle Busch ($10,600) – How many times can Kyle Busch burn fantasy players? As many times as he burns the beads on his tires and hits the wall. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. It’s not a tire problem, Kyle needs to learn to save his tire. (4.7 fppk)

9. Jamie McMurray ($7,800) – With four top 10s (six top 15s) this season, Jamie Mac has outgrown the title of “safe 50/50 game driver.” He’s better than that. He’s more like Kyle Larson Light. On second thought, that’s not much better; I tried. (3.0 fppk)

10. Denny Hamlin ($9,300) – At short tracks, Hamlin comes alive. He finished 10th at Bristol and he will likely build off of that finish this week. Richmond is his hometown track, so it should not be a surprise that he has three consecutive top 10s and a win at this short track last fall. (2.4 fppk)

11Erik Jones$8,100
12Kurt Busch$7,700
13Austin Dillon$7,400
14Trevor Bayne$6,800
15Ryan Newman$7,200

11. Erik Jones ($8,100) – The deal with Erik Jones is that he races better than he finishes, and that’s kind of a big deal. At Bristol his average running position was eighth, but he finished 17th. He’s got the talent and the car, but he’s got to close better. (4.1 fppk)

12. Kurt Busch ($7,700) – After winning the Daytona 500, Kurt finished outside of the top 20 in six of the next seven races. It’s mostly bad luck. At some point, it will turn around and this is as good of a week as any. Kurt has the fifth-best average running position at Richmond over the last six races. (2.2 fppk)

13. Austin Dillon ($7,400) – In the last two short track races, Dillon has finished inside the top 10 in fantasy points in both races with a price tag under $8,000. This week, NASCAR returns to a short track and his price tag is still well under $8,000. (3.3 fppk)

14. Trevor Bayne ($6,800) – The times they are a changin’. The Gordon, Stewart and Junior days are over. Trevor Bayne has seven top 20s in the eight races this season (eighth-best average finish). His average running positions were 13th and 16th at Richmond last season. (5.2 fppk)

15. Ryan Newman ($7,200) – Bumping Newman from the top 20 was almost a certainty until his salary was released. He’s almost in the $6,000 range. Newman has been just OK at Richmond, but that’s pretty much his record everywhere else. (3.2 fppk)

16Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.$7,000
17Clint Bowyer$8,500
18Ryan Blaney$7,900
19Dale Earnhardt, Jr.$8,300
20Matt Kenseth$8,800

16. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($7,000) – This is a new Stenhouse. With limited practice time and a beat-up race car, Stenhouse continued his excellence at Bristol. It’s not just Bristol, the Roush Fords are for real this year. (4.5 fppk)

17. Clint Bowyer ($8,500) – He’s a short track guy. Bowyer probably won’t earn fast lap or laps led points, but that’s not a deal breaker. At his price, a top-10 finishing position with a sprinkle of place differential points and you may have the winning GPP recipe. (4.3 fppk)

18. Ryan Blaney ($7,900) – In his rookie year, he flashed signs of brilliance and wrecked into things. This season, he’s been less volatile and even more brilliant, but nobody is perfect and Bristol can get the best of anyone. It’s on to Richmond, where Blaney was not brilliant last season. (4.5 fppk)

19. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. ($8,300) – This will be the only blurb this week that doesn’t mention Junior’s retirement. Oh wait, never mind. His current form is suspect, but Junior has the eighth-best average running position at Richmond over the last six races. (2.1 fppk)

20. Matt Kenseth ($8,800) – It’s been up and down this year for Kenseth. Last week, Kenseth snuck away with a top-five (average running position of 15th). That does not instill confidence in DFS players. Maybe, it’s just not his year? (2.2 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.