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Cap Considerations

DFS: Charlotte (Fall)

by Dan Beaver
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Draft Kings

Martin Truex Jr. is this week’s favorite again after earning the most points in two of the last three similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track races and the second-most on the other occasions. He will not come cheap though with a price tag of $10,900 and he is going to force players to make some difficult decisions below the midline. There is also no guarantee that something bad will not happen to him before the halfway point of this 500-mile race and that could cost a lot in lost potential.

That might send a player down to Brad Keselowski.  He is $1,100 cheaper, which allows a player to spend an average of $220 more on other drivers. That could make a critical difference at every level, allowing one to upgrade their bargain and midcap picks. Keselowski scored the fifth-most points Charlotte Motor Speedway this May, fourth-most at Michigan International Speedway, and third-most at Kentucky Speedway.

Kasey Kahne is one of those midcap picks who should be noted. Not only is he on an upward tick, but he has been solid on this track type during the year. This week, he is the 13th-most expensive driver in the game with a price of $8,500 and he has performed in that range in the past four unrestricted, intermediate speedway races.  His last six points’ productions in this game averaged out to slightly better than 10th.

The Ganassi guys represent good options even though they are no longer part of the Chase. Kyle Larson mistimed qualification this week and rolls off the grid 25th. He obviously has a much faster car than that and will earn positive place-differential points. He may even be able to score top-five points and begin playing the role of spoiler in the final seven weeks.

McMurray is $2,000 cheaper than Larson and much less certain, but he is a better value than the others in his range. Tony Stewart, Ryan Blaney, and Ryan Newman are all comparably priced but they have proven to be erratic in recent week. Players with multiple lineups may want to try different combinations in this price range.

Can one man make a difference? The answer is an emphatic “yes” under the right circumstances. Michael McDowell has been a great value on a number of occasions this year and he should be even better with the veteran addition of Todd Parrott to the No. 95 team. Two of his best points’ productions in the Draft Kings game came on the restrictor-plate Daytona International Speedway, but he also had a strong showing a few weeks ago at Richmond International Raceway to earn the sixth-most. Those top-10 successes are rare, but if McDowell can finish in the top 20 in Draft Kings’ points he will be well worth his $5,400 price tag.

Lineup set while writing this article: Brad Keselowski ($9,800), Kyle Larson ($9,600), Chase Elliott ($8,900), Kasey Kahne ($8,500), Jamie McMurray ($7,600), and Michael McDowell ($5,400).

RaceDayScore

With the RaceDayScore game, it is often best to start at the bottom and build up. Look for bargains that will free up cap room at the top of the order and bear in mind that $10,000 is the midline. The manager of this game tends to like to keep half his players above that midline and half below, so finding a bargain often means looking for a driver who is going to finish in the low- to mid-20s but provides better results among the marquee elite.

Alex Bowman is the obvious choice in the bargain bin. While he is almost certain to finish worse than his second-place qualification run, he is going to earn enough points to vindicate his price tag of $8,300. If one places him and McDowell on the roster, the remaining four drivers average out to about $11,000 and that opens up a ton of options.

Two drivers who stand out in the $10k and change department are Truex and Chase Elliott. While Truex is prohibitively expensive in Draft Kings, his price tag of $10,900 is not that bad in this game. That makes him the eighth-most expensive driver who has the capacity to earn maximum or at least top-five points.

Elliott advanced to the second round of the Chase and is showing a lot of maturity and speed. He is going to challenge for wins in the next two weeks on the similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks, so even if he falls a little short, he should still earn top-10 points.

Elliott is priced the same as teammate Jimmie Johnson. There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that this driver can wheel a car on this track type. He simply needs to eliminate the vast array of mistakes that has plagued both him and the team throughout the season. If one is forced to make a choice between Johnson and Elliott the nod should go to the No. 24—not because Chase is a better driver than Jimmie, but because the rookie has made fewer errors than the veteran.

Lineup set while writing this article: Brad Keselowski ($11,500), Martin Truex Jr. ($10,900), Chase Elliott ($10,600), Jimmie Johnson (10,600), Alex Bowman (8,300), and Michael McDowell (8,000).
  

Driver

Avg. Fin Last 6 Races

Avg. Points Draft Kings

Avg. Points RaceDayScore

Brad Keselowski

4.83

5.50

42.28

Martin Truex Jr./p>

5.50

4.50

47.67

Denny Hamlin

7.33

10.50

39.07

Joey Logano

7.33

9.00

37.33

Chase Elliott

8.33

6.67

40.20

Kyle Busch

8.67

10.83

37.03

Kasey Kahne

9.17

9.83

37.00

Kyle Larson

9.83

14.00

36.27

Kevin Harvick

11.67

13.33

35.67

Matt Kenseth

12.17

13.67

31.60

Jimmie Johnson

12.83

13.33

32.25

Austin Dillon

13.17

14.00

32.18

Jeff Gordon

13.33

17.00

31.57

Kurt Busch

14.50

17.67

27.63

Carl Edwards

15.50

20.00

24.70

Jamie McMurray

16.67

20.50

24.08

Alex Bowman

18.00

21.33

24.03

Ryan Newman

18.17

22.00

23.50

Ryan Blaney

18.33

19.00

25.38

AJ Allmendinger

19.17

19.50

25.33

Ricky Stenhouse Jr./p>

20.50

20.17

24.83

Danica Patrick

22.00

20.00

23.65

Aric Almirola

23.17

20.17

22.17

Tony Stewart

23.50

27.17

16.58

Paul Menard

23.67

22.67

20.17

Greg Biffle

24.50

22.50

20.22

Dylan Lupton

25.00

16.00

26.00

Clint Bowyer

25.33

20.17

21.00

Casey Mears

25.83

24.17

19.50

Chris Buescher

26.17

27.33

16.42

Trevor Bayne

26.50

27.17

15.17

Michael McDowell

26.60

25.60

18.30

Regan Smith

28.00

25.20

17.16

Ty Dillon

29.50

33.00

15.50

Matt DiBenedetto

30.00

25.67

15.42

David Ragan

30.17

29.50

13.08

Brian Scott

30.83

28.50

13.75

Landon Cassill

32.00

28.50

11.83

Michael Annett

33.00

30.50

12.75

Reed Sorenson

33.83

30.17

12.58

Timmy Hill

34.00

34.00

11.00

Jeffrey Earnhardt

35.00

30.40

11.14

Josh Wise

35.50

32.00

10.17

Cole Whitt

36.60

31.50

8.88

Joey Gase

40.00

37.00

3.00

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Dan Beaver

Dan Beaver has been covering fantasy NASCAR for more than 20 years with a little help from his >650,000 record database. He can be found on Twitter @FantasyRace.