NASCAR Daily Fantasy Helper: Coke Zero Sugar 400
Chicago gave us the most exciting finish to a race this season with Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson dueling it out until Busch spun out Larson at the end to grab the win. Now we go back to Daytona for the second time this campaign.
Remember, this week, at a restrictor-plate track, it's OK for you to have a lot of extra salary cap remaining when your lineup construction is complete. The optimal build is to take drivers from the back, for the most part, which may include drivers you would never play otherwise.
Here at numberFire, we've always got you covered for everything NASCAR DFS. Our track preview gives you more information about this track, our driver preview helps bring you up to speed on drivers' recent history here and elsewhere, and our Heat Check Podcast with Jim Sannes gives you insight how he is approaching this weekend's slate.
Kurt Busch ($10,800): As we touched on in the intro, the drivers who are starting further back are the ones we should be targeting. With only 160 laps, there will not be many laps-led points to be had (only 16 to split amongst the entire driver pool), so Kurt Busch starting in 23rd is perfect for us. While his practice numbers from the singular practice these drivers had look good on paper, they're not super important to us given the random nature of restrictor-plate races. Busch has solid track history at both plate tracks on the circuit (Daytona and Talladega), and his equipment is much better than that of a driver who usually starts in 23rd. Look for Busch to be a solid candidate for place-differential points.
Aric Almirola ($10,100): Almirola is in a slightly better position fantasy-wise than even Busch is. Starting in 26th, Almirola has a bit more place-differential upside, and if you're looking at past hypothetical fantasy results, you will find that he has done well at plate races in the past. Looking at Daytona specifically, he has done fine since 2014, except for two races, both of which he was involved in crashes. That is a reality with plate racing given how close some of the cars drive next to each other. At the end of the day, though, Almirola is a solid option in all formats.
Paul Menard ($9,000): Here are the last three results for Menard at Daytona: sixth, third and fifth. Those three finishes came after a rough stretch for Menard at plate tracks, especially Daytona. Starting 30th and in solid equipment, he has a great chance to move up in the field. The only reason to be scared here is because of the risk of crashing, but outside of that -- something that's an issue for pretty much everyone, Menard is a solid option for tournaments and cash games.
Erik Jones ($8,500): A lot of the same arguments we just made can be made for Jones, too. He's got great equipment and has been a solid driver this season, to the point that we know he can plow up the field. The only downside for Jones is that his restrictor-plate track history has been bad aside from last year's summer Daytona. Still, Jones should be a solid value for fantasy lineups with the amount of place-differential upside he offers.
Jamie McMurray ($7,900): Playing McMurray is never easy, but he's someone worth stomaching this week. Admittedly, after taking a gander at his track history and his practice numbers, you're not going to feel great. So why should you use McMurray? Because he is starting 27th. A lot of his warts can be excused simply because he is starting 27th and has the ability to move up and provide your lineup with place-differential points. The price is good enough, as well, so you can fit some higher-priced guys and maximize the place differential in your lineup. As long as he can stay on the track, he may well end up in the optimal lineup.
Kasey Kahne ($7,000): Honestly, most -- if not all -- of the drivers priced around Kahne and lower are in play today. Kahne, though, unlike some of these other drivers, has the experience at plate tracks and knows how to do well here. Even though his equipment is not quite as good as it was in previous years, it's still good enough to get some place-differential points with him starting in the 28th position. Some might be turned off by how Kahne has performed this season, but none of that is relevant here at Daytona. Consider Kahne in your tournament player pool for his cheap price and place-differential potential.
Evan Cheney is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Evan Cheney also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Theman90210. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.