The final practice for the Coca-Cola 600 was Saturday afternoon, and now we have a clearer picture of who to target for Sunday evening. So here is my final DraftKings DFS NASCAR tip sheet.
Jimmie Johnson ($13,200) – He is $1,000 cheaper than Kevin Harvick and he dominates at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He had the fifth-best 10 consecutive lap average in the final Saturday practice after having placed first in the category and finishing fifth overall in the first Saturday practice session. Johnson has the most wins at the site and most among active drivers in this event. He leads all competitors in key Loop Data stats including the all-important Driver Rating (111.6) and he has an Average Running Position of 7.6. Most notable for players on DraftKings is the fact that he leads in Fastest Laps Run (688) and Quality Passes (passes of cars in the Top 15 while under green flag conditions) with 1,031. He has also spent 87.5 percent of his laps in the Top 15, best for any driver as well. Johnson starts 13th and will help you in the finish and pass differential categories for sure.
Kevin Harvick (14,200) – Harvick finished 10th in the Final Practice and was 10th in consecutive lap average in the session. But there is no hotter driver in the sport right now and he may save his best work for the later stages of the race. Harvick was won two of the past four races at CMS. He starts eighth and is a great bet to finish in the Top 3.
Matt Kenseth (11,300) – There’s a good chance you can pair him with Johnson or Harvick this week, and after he took the pole and sustained his momentum through pre-race events, it’s hard to not find a way to get him in there. Kenseth was fifth in the final practice and was running strong before he headed to the garage after 33 laps. Joe Gibbs Racing is charging into Charlotte and Kenseth is their best candidate to end up on Victory Lane. He is sure to lead some laps and boost you in that category. Kenseth is fourth in DR, Fastest Laps Run and Quality Passes at CMS.
Kurt Busch (13,000) – It seems like he is a threat to win every week since he returned. Busch won both of the Saturday practice sessions. He starts 14th, which is a great spot for helping your finish differential. Busch has finished Top 15 in every race this year, so don’t expect him to hurt you in terms of pass differential, either. The tough choice is, can you go with him over Johnson or Harvick? I can only do it if I roll out more than one lineup.
Kasey Kahne (10,100) – A flat tire ruined his qualifying day, but now he starts 33rd and is the ultimate must-start for place and pass differential. In many races, drivers who start so deep in the pack are not going to contend for a victory (despite what some newbies at this may speculate). Kahne’s mishap makes him a unique and outstanding pick this week. Kahne has the best Consecutive Top 10 Average in the final practice and finished second overall. He has two Top 5s at CMS over the last two years and has led nearly 300 laps during that span. He has four wins at CMS, and ranks third in DR, Quality Passes and Green-Flag Passes. He is second in Fastest Laps Run and fourth in Laps in the Top 15.
Denny Hamlin ($10,900) – He won the All-Star Race and is the second-best JGR selection after Kenseth. You must take notice when certain teams are running strong and keep in mind the drivers share notes with each other. Hamlin starts fifth and may not falter much at all. He had the second-best 10 consecutive Lap Average in the Final Practice. Seven drivers who won the AS race went on to win this week’s event.
Paul Menard (8,400) – After Kahne, he may be the best pure bargain in the field. Menard has been inconsistent overall this year, but he finished second in the All-Star event and finished third in the final practice. He had the second-best consecutive Top 10 average behind only Johnson in the first session. He finished eighth in the 2014 CC 600. Menard starts 23rd and can really help in place differential.
More Value Plays – Martin Truex Jr. ($9,900) has run well all year long and is a safe bet to endure and finish Top 10 or maybe better in the longest race of the year. Jamie McMurray (9,300) starts 22nd and finished Top 5 in both CMS races last year. Carl Edwards (10,700) has run very well in pre-race events and could fade when it counts, and the same can be said for David Ragan (8,900). Austin Dillon (8,200) won Saturday’s Xfinity race but has been very unreliable in the Sprint Cup series, so he is more of a tournament play. Kyle Larson (9,500) had the third best consecutive 10 Lap Average in the final practice. Greg Biffle (8,700) starts fourth and has run well in pre-race events, but he is a real danger to drop in the pack and is only a very bold tournament play.
Ryan Blaney (7.900)- Ran seventh and 17th in the final practices. Starts 16th and may not drop much.
Chase Elliott (8,300) – Running in Hendrick equipment and may gain a few spots from 28th.
Casey Mears (7,800) – Starts 34th and was 12th in finish and best consecutive Top 10 average in final practice.
Josh Wise (7,400)- If you are looking way towards the bottom of the list, he cannot fall much from 38th and could move up a few spots to not hurt you and let you front load the lineup elsewhere.