Chase Elliott

Rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for Saturday’s race in Florida. The ordering is not based on the highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by value of each driver.

(fppk = average fantasy points per $1,000 of salary.)

1. Joey Logano ($10,200) – Penske builds the best plate track cars, Logano is the best plate racer (4 wins), and Logano’s spotter, T.J. Majors is the best plate racing spotter (previously Earnhardt, Jr.’s spotter). Logano currently has the best odds to win the Daytona race. (5.0 fppk)

2. Brad Keselowski ($10,500) – Along with his Penske teammate, Keselowski has the best odds to win at Daytona. Keselowski has six plate racing wins. That’s the most among active drivers. He’s had terrible luck at the plate tracks of late, but his fortune will turn around eventually. (5.1 fppk)

3. Clint Bowyer ($9,300) – Technically, Ricky Stenhouse has the best average finish at the restrictor plate tracks. However, Bowyer’s average finish is just a fraction behind Stenhouse, and Bowyer has competed in 28 more plate races. (3.3 fppk)

4. Alex Bowman ($8,600) – If there is such a thing as momentum in NASCAR, then Bowman has it. He has been one of the hottest drivers in NASCAR over the last three months, and he finished second in the last plate race. (5.0 fppk)

5. Kurt Busch ($9,500) – In terms of average finish, Kurt Busch ranks 4th at the plate tracks. He won the 2017 Daytona 500. All of the boxes are checked, but just because he’s had success at the plate tracks does not imply that he will in the future. That’s the beauty of plate racing, it’s nearly impossible to predict. (4.7 fppk)

6. Denny Hamlin ($9,000) – Over the last six years, Hamlin has been the best driver at Daytona. In those 11 races, he’s finished 1st, 38th, 3rd, 24th, 17th, 17th, 1st, 3rd, 4th, 6th and 2nd. Sure, there are a couple of duds, but that’s a lot of top 10s and wins. (4.2 fppk)

7. Kevin Harvick ($11,300) – It would be fitting that Harvick finally gets his first win of 2019 at Daytona. Harvick has not won at a plate track since 2010. Despite the drought, Harvick has the 3rd-best average finish at the plate tracks. (4.3 fppk)

8. Chase Elliott ($9,900) – Hendrick Motorsports will enter Daytona with a lot of confidence. The Alex Bowman win at Chicago was huge, but more importantly, Elliott won at Talladega and Alex Bowman finished second. The Hendrick cars are ready for the plate race. (5.0 fppk)

9. Kyle Busch ($11,000) – Four times a year Kyle Busch isn’t Kyle Busch. When Kyle Busch travels to Daytona for the annual Fourth of July plate race it’s like Superman visiting the planet of Krypton. The mighty restrictor plate neutralizes Busch’s superior equipment and he must survive on wits alone. (6.0 fppk)

10. Martin Truex, Jr. ($10,800) – There are two possible outcomes at a plate race: a driver wrecks or finishes. It would stand to reason that most drivers avoid wrecking in around 50% of their plate races. Truex has a top-20 finish in 40% of his last 10 plate races. (5.6 fppk)

11. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($7,400) – It’s fair to say that Stenhouse is one of the best plate racers in NASCAR. In 24 plate races, Stenhouse has two wins and an average finish of 15, that’s the best average finish in NASCAR. (4.2 fppk)

12. Austin Dillon ($6,600) – This has been the worst season of Austin Dillon’s career. It’s been so bad that Dillon is priced below $7,000 at Daytona. Dillon has been one the most consistent plate racers in all three series. He’s a past Daytona 500 winner, but that doesn’t seem to matter. (4.8 fppk)

13. Aric Almirola ($8,400) – At plate races, it’s nice to have strong teammates and great equipment, if there aren’t any wrecks. Unfortunately, there are plenty of wrecks and most teammates do not make to the end of the race. Almirola has the car and strong teammates, but he would rather have luck. (3.9 fppk)

14. Ryan Newman ($7,700) – Over the last 10 plate races, Nemwan has seven top-15 finishes. His career top-20 percentage at the plate tracks is 54%. The increase in production could imply that Newman has figured this plate racing thing out or Newman has simply been lucky. (4.7 fppk)

15. Kyle Larson ($9,700) – Again, there are two outcomes this weekend. A driver wrecks or survives and finishes inside the top 15. With only two outcomes, each driver’s stat sheet should hover around 50%. Larson has a top 15 in four of his 10 races at Daytona. (3.7 fppk)

16. Erik Jones ($8,800) – He won the 2018 Daytona summer race. Was he the best driver in that race? Who cares? Jones did not wreck. In the 2019 Daytona 500, he did not wreck and he finished 3rd. (4.1 fppk)

17. Ryan Blaney ($8,300) – Penske has the best restrictor plate cars. Keselowski and Logano get all of the attention, but Blaney is just as capable. The problem with Blaney is that he’s wrecked in four of his eight Daytona races. (4.3 fppk)

18. Chris Buescher ($6,800) – The JTG Daughtery cars have been very consistent at the plate tracks. Buescher, Preece and the former driver of the No. 47 car A.J. Allmendinger has frequently been top DFS performers over the last three seasons at the plate tracks. (4.2 fppk)

19. Jimmie Johnson ($7,900) – Here’s why you consider playing Jimmie Johnson at Daytona: he’s not very good at the plate tracks. While other DFS players avoid Johnson, sharp or borderline crazy DFS players will get low ownership on a Johnson play that doesn’t require a great performance, but simply wreck avoidance. (3.9 fppk)

20. William Byron ($7,600) – The Hendrick cars are heating up and they were strong at Talladega. On paper, Byron is a terrible play. His best plate finish is 20th, but that just means no one will play him. If Byron does not wreck, he’ll be a low owned top 10 driver. (4.2 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.