WATCH: NASCAR Price Check – FireKeepers Casino 400


Rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for Sunday’s FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan International Speedway. 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.)

RANKDRIVERSALARY
1Kyle Busch$11,800
2Joey Logano $9,700
3Chase Elliott$10,000
4Kevin Harvick $10,700
5Martin Truex, Jr.$10,400

1. Kyle Busch ($11,800) – At Charlotte, Busch posted the fastest average green flag speed. He had the fastest green flag speed week at Pocono. It should not surprise anyone if Busch had the fastest car for the third week in a row. (6.4 fppk)

2. Joey Logano ($9,700) – It is clear Kyle Busch is the No. 1 driver this season. The second best driver is not a mystery. either. Logano has the second most top-five finishes and the second most top-10 finishes. (4.9 fppk)

3. Chase Elliott ($10,000) – The No. 9 car might be the fastest car this season. There is just one problem: In order for Elliott to win, he has to beat Kyle Busch. Elliott should accumulate plenty of top-five finishes by the end of the season, but he’ll need luck to beat Busch. (5.8 fppk)

4. Kevin Harvick ($10,700) – Even if Harvick did not earn a penalty and suffer a mechanical failure, he was not going to win at Pocono. He did not lead or run a significant amount of laps. He was a top-three driver and nothing else. That’s the Kevin Harvick of 2019. (4.1 fppk)

5. Martin Truex, Jr. ($10,400) – It’s good for DFS players that Truex earned a DNF last week. He struggled in the Pocono race, but his struggles can be attributed to his failing engine and dismissed as circumstantial. (5.6 fppk)


RANKDRIVERSALARY
6Brad Keselowski$11,200
7Aric Almirola$8,100
8Daniel Suarez$7,700
9Erik Jones$8,300
10Denny Hamlin$8,900

6. Brad Keselowski ($11,200) – Michigan is a special track for Keselowski. It’s his home track and the track built by his boss Roger Penske. The added pressure has affected his performance at this intermediate track. He just can’t seem to win at Michigan. (5.4 fppk)

7. Aric Almirola ($8,100) – After Daytona, Almirola rolled off six straight top-10 finishes. In the past five races, he’s taken a small step backwards and is averaging an 11th-place finish. (3.9 fppk)

8. Daniel Suarez ($7,700) – His optimal lineup streak is legendary. Suarez has been optimal in six of the past seven non-plate races. No driver has ever accomplished this feat. If you’re not on the bandwagon, what are you waiting for? (4.9 fppk)

9. Erik Jones ($8,300) – Michigan is Jones’ home track. which means it’s the track closest to his house. Jones did not grow up racing at this track. The stands will not be packed with fans that provide a hometown advantage. Stats matter in NASCAR, not narratives. Jones had the third highest driver rating last week. (4.0 fppk)

10. Denny Hamlin ($8,900) – In his post-race interview, Hamlin stated \ he expected Michigan to be a good race. However, the point was not to praise Michigan but to shame Pocono. The week’s race likely will be a boring lap-turner where Hamlin cruises around inside the top 10. (4.3 fppk)


RANKDRIVERSALARY
11Kyle Larson$9,500
12Alex Bowman$8,500
13Kurt Busch$9,300
14Ryan Blaney$9,100
15Clint Bowyer$8,700

11. Kyle Larson ($9,500) – Last week, I compared Larson to Ricky Stenhouse Jr. based on his propensity to disappoint. At Pocono, Larson wrecked one green flag lap after Stenhouse wrecked. Once upon a time, Larson won three consecutive Michigan races. He can win this weekend, but he is more likely to fail. (3.4 fppk)

12. Alex Bowman ($8,500) – It appears Bowman finally has cooled off, but has he? His average running position at Pocono was 13th. That’s only a few spots worse than Charlotte, which was only few spots worse than Kansas. He’s still a top-10 driver. (4.7 fppk)

13. Kurt Busch ($9,300) – Rostering Kurt Busch is an adventure. At Pocono, he spent half of the race outside of the top 20. His average running position was 19th, but he finished 11th much to the chagrin of DFS players that faded the chalky Kurt Busch play. (4.8 fppk)

14. Ryan Blaney ($9,100) – Last season, Blaney earned two top-10 finishes at Michigan. Unfortunately, that was in an entirely different racing package. Blaney was strong at the start of the season, but he’s tailed off since April. (4.0 fppk)

15. Clint Bowyer ($8,700) – He won the rain-shortened 2018 Michigan race. That’s the only way he can win at an intermediate track. He has one career win at a 1.5-mile intermediate track and one career win at a two-mile intermediate track. (4.0 fppk)


RANKDRIVERSALARY
16Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.$7,300
17Ryan Newman$7,500
18William Byron $7,600
19Jimmie Johnson$7,900
20Austin Dillon$6,800

16. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. ($7,300) – The 2019 package suits Stenhouse at the intermediate tracks. He finished 11th at Kansas and fifth at Charlotte. He raced well at the other intermediate tracks earlier this season. (3.2 fppk)

17. Ryan Newman ($7,500) – He’s earned back-to-back 16th-place finishes. It’s likely he earns another at Michigan. In fact, it’s likely he earns 16th-place finishes for infinity. Newman has been finishing in the mid-teens for a decade. (4.5 fppk)

18. William Byron ($7,600) – He was in the optimal lineup last week for the fifth time this season. He finished ninth and lost eight place-differential points. That pretty much erased his laps led and fast lap points, yet somehow he squeaked into the optimal lineup again. (4.2 fppk)

19. Jimmie Johnson ($7,900) – Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson had a Freaky Friday experience at Pocono. Kurt’s average position was 19th, but he finished 11th. Jimmie’s average position was 11th, but he finished 19th. (3.7 fppk)

20. Austin Dillon ($6,800) – In terms of funding, this is a top-15 car. Dillon isn’t a great driver, but he’s at least the 20th-best driver in NASCAR. What’s really shocking is he’s $200 dollars away from being priced lower than his little brother. Please, make this happen next week DraftKings. (2.8 fppk)


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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.