This weekend NASCAR heads to ISM Raceway in Phoenix. As usual, I’ll give you my NASCAR DFS picks, fades, and projections. Also, the NASCAR DFS Multi-Lineup Optimizer, Sim Scores, and Splits apps will be updated for your NASCAR DFS needs shortly after final practice.
For betting insights into the race, check out my piece on The Action Network. In that article, I’ll highlight my favorite NASCAR bets for Sunday’s race. Also, my podcast co-host, Matthew Freedman, wrote up his favorite prop-bets for Phoenix as well.
Make sure to check out the NASCAR DFS Phoenix early-week podcast for slate dynamics and what data to focus on, and the post-qualifying episode of On the Daily DFS where I break down drivers in more depth, prior to Saturday practice. RotoViz Live will also air three hours before lineups lock, at 12:30pm ET/9:30am PT Sunday morning. On RotoViz Live, I’ll break down almost every driver — certainly far more than I can touch on in this article — and answer all your NASCAR DFS questions for Sunday’s race.
If you’re new to daily fantasy NASCAR, or simply need a refresher, check out the flat track section of my track types article. Brush up on your general GPP strategy and game theory if you want to have a shot at taking down first place. If you’re more of a cash game player, check out how to target high floor drivers, and remember to find any potential race dominators.
Let’s get to the NASCAR DFS picks and projections for Phoenix!
NASCAR DFS PHOENIX MODEL PROJECTIONS
The model projections assume that the driver finishes the race – hence why you don’t see any average finishing positions worse than about 31st. The Pts column shows the average projected DraftKings points for races when the driver finishes the race.
|Martin Truex Jr||1||6.77||69.88||27.98||62.92||10900||39.1%|
|Darrell Wallace Jr||27||21.59||0.26||0.34||28.06||6600||9.9%|
|Ricky Stenhouse Jr||29||18.20||0.09||0.75||36.99||7100||46.7%|
Now on to the NASCAR DFS picks for Sunday!
NASCAR DFS PICKS – CASH GAMES
Kevin Harvick ($11,400) — The price tag for Harvick is certainly steep, but he’s been the best driver this year, and Phoenix is his best track. Harvick posted the best five, 10, and 20 consecutive lap speed in final practice. Expect him to lead plenty of laps despite starting 10th.
Brad Keselowski ($9900) — Keselowski got bumped out in the first round of qualifying and will start 25th. However, that presents a nice opportunity for cash games. Keselowski has the third best driver rating over the last eight flat track races and the second best driver rating over the last eight flat track races at tracks 1-mile or less (Phoenix, Richmond, Martinsville, New Hampshire).
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. ($7100) — Stenhouse will be scored from the 29th position for DraftKings purposes, but he’ll start at the tail end of the field thanks to a crash in opening practice. That doesn’t worry me. Stenhouse has an average finish of 6.0 over the last two Phoenix races despite starting 21st or worse in both of those races.
NASCAR DFS PICKS – GPPS
Chase Elliott ($9300) — Elliott has the fifth best driver rating over the last eight races at the four 1-mile or shorter flat tracks. He was also quick in final practice, posting the second-best 10, 15, and 20 consecutive lap averages in final practice, behind only Harvick. Elliott (3rd) starts closer to the front than Harvick (10th), so he could snatch the lead away from Truex earlier than Harvick. If you want to get away from either Truex or Harvick in GPPs, you can do so with a pivot to Elliott.
Aric Almirola ($8100) — Almirola spent much of the second practice following teammate Kevin Harvick, and that translated to speed in final practice, with the third-best time over 10 and 15 consecutive laps. He’s a great play in a more balanced lineup, when we can see a lot of top-heavy lineups with Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., and Keselowski sure to draw plenty of ownership, making fitting in Almirola pretty tough.
A.J. Allmendinger ($5800) — I was intially down on Allmendinger early in the week as I talked about him as a potential fade on both podcasts. But after final practice and running the model, I now think he’s an interesting GPP play. The model projects him at 31.5 DraftKings points, which at his $5800 salary would be a huge plus for your lineups that have expensive dominators. And that point total is based on his average projected finish. He could finish higher than that.
NASCAR DFS PHOENIX FADES
Jimmie Johnson ($9000) — Unlike Allmendinger, I’m not changing my mind on Johnson. He was okay in final practice, but it wasn’t a blow-your-socks-off kind of practice. The model doesn’t like Johnson even with practice data, and an average projected finish of 15.0 is not good enough for a driver of his salary.