NASCAR Daily Fantasy Helper: Consumers Energy 400
If you are looking for an action-packed way to get your sports fix, NASCAR may be a great avenue to explore. Far from just driving in circles, some of the world's best compete nearly every weekend from February to November on tracks across America. NASCAR drivers are scored ultimately based on how they finish in the race, how many spots they advance from their starting position, and how many laps they finish and lead. Avoiding drivers that crash out of the race is a must, of course!
Here at numberFire, we've always got you covered for everything NASCAR DFS. Our track preview breaks down this week's venue, and we also have The Heat Check Fantasy Podcast, where Jim Sannes breaks down his favorite plays for Sunday's slate. Jim also has a current form and odds breakdown to analytically review how NASCAR's best drivers are performing recently.
Part one of this weekend's doubleheader saw a familiar them. Kevin Harvick dominated the 500-kilometer event, winning both stages and leading 92 laps on the way to his series-lead tying fifth win of 2020. Harvick and his dominant machine, as well as 38 other challengers, have the exact same challenge ahead on Sunday, and they will continue to try and find the right balance on this fast, 2.5-mile racetrack.
The starting lineup for Sunday's race was determined by an invert of Saturday's finishing order, which puts 20th-place finisher Chris Buescher on the pole for Sunday's race. Race winner Kevin Harvick will start 20th, but since pit stalls were picked in by way of the finishing order from Saturday, he will have the premier pit stall for this race. The PJ1 traction compound will continue to remain on track to help drivers with passing, but no reports of reapplication overnight have been confirmed yet.
With that, let's preview the Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan.
Kevin Harvick ($14,000): If you watched the race on Saturday, there really is no explanation needed for Harvick. He won both stages, the race, and led 92 laps in the process with no discernible challenger. On an afternoon where it was difficult to pass, Harvick regained the lead several times under green flag conditions. Now, with the inverted starting grid, there is pass-differential upside from his 20th place starting spot. He has won three of the last five races at Michigan.
Brad Keselowski ($12,200): When it comes to lineup building, using Harvick with another elite stud will be the way to go. There are plenty of several worthy nominees, but Keselowski finished second on Saturday, had top-five finishes in both stages, and still has the most motivation of any driver in this area. Keselowski has the second-highest driver rating in the last five races at Michigan (108.2), but the Rochester Hills native has still not conquered his home track with a win. He'll have plenty of pass-differential upside today as he rolls off 19th due to the invert.
Erik Jones ($10,000): This section is difficult for Sunday. Most of the drivers in this pricing tier are moving to the front as a result of the invert, but Jones is a good bet. Jones had a top-10 average running position on Saturday and scored points in both stages. He unfortunately starts ninth but is in desperate need of a win to secure his playoff spot. He, like Keselowski, is also looking for his first win at his home track.
Alex Bowman ($9,200): Bowman just missed the invert, and as a result, he is in a much better fantasy position than most drivers in this price range as he gets to start where he finished Saturday, which is in 21st. That result does not indicate the speed Bowman had. He earned points in both stages and was inside the top-15 for much of the afternoon before some terrible luck on restarts late. Bowman has long had speed at large, smooth tracks, and he had two straight top-10 finishes at MIS before Saturday's stumble. He's the top upside play in this pricing tier because of his starting spot.
Cole Custer ($7,600): Cole Custer found trouble, crashing late in Saturday's race. For fantasy, it is not the worst thing in the world to have such great equipment so deep in the field. Custer will start 34th officially in the same equipment Kevin Harvick dominated with, which makes his pass-differential potential tremendous. The rookie is already locked in the playoffs by way of his win at Kentucky, but Custer has been performing as a veteran as of late with top-10 finishes in four of his last six races.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. ($6,400): The Mississippi native is not a fantasy play for the faint of heart, as Stenhouse Jr. often finds crashes and finds trouble seemingly weekly. But there is no doubting the speed and aggressiveness of Stenhouse, and that was on display on Saturday with a top-20 running position all afternoon. He was primed to be an elite fantasy play if he finished somewhere around there, but he had a mechanical issue in overtime. Stenhouse should be fast again today, and Michigan's low crash rate helps him avoid his usual tendency to hit things.
Austin Swaim is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Austin Swaim also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username ASwaim3. 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.