The Chase for the Sprint Cup Series wraps up the 2016 series at Homestead-Miami Speedway in South Florida, and a champion will be crowned. If you have been reading this piece all season, my heartfelt thanks for sticking around to the end. It is much appreciated and I hope the information has helped you win big!
Hendrick Motorsports driver Jimmie Johnson ($10,800) looks to make history and join Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt Sr. as the only seven-time Cup Series champion. Johnson has never won in 15 starts at Homestead-Miami, and he has just four Top 5s with a 14.1 Average-Finish Position (AFP) while leading just 99 laps. He has posted 10 Top 10 finishes and isn’t terrible, but at this high price he isn’t the best DFS option this weekend.
Joe Gibbs Racing’s Carl Edwards ($9,700) has dominated over the years at HMS, and he will be a very popular choice given his reasonable salary. He won at Homestead in November 2008 and again in 2010, and he has five Top 5s, seven Top 10s and a circuit-best 568 laps led in 12 career starts at the track. Edwards has a 9.3 AFP which is second-best among all drivers, behind only teammate Matt Kenseth ($9,300). Over the past five starts at Homestead, Edwards has a 99.7 Driver Rating with 127 laps led and 74.1 percent of his laps turned inside the Top 15, according to NASCAR’s Loop Data.
(DraftKings.com salaries in parentheses)
Speaking of Kenseth, he had terrible luck with a last-lap crash in Phoenix last week to knock him from the final four and championship contention. That’s too bad, too, as he would have had a good shot at all the marbles. Over the past five races at Homestead he has a 111.7 Driver Rating with 161 laps led and a 7.4 AFP, running 95.4 percent of his laps inside the Top 15. He has won once at HMS with half of his 16 career starts resulting in a Top 10 finish.
JGR’s Kyle Busch ($10,500) is searching for his second straight Sprint Cup Series championship. He won last season’s title in style, starting third and finishing with the checkered flag. Over the past five starts at Homestead he has a 108.7 Driver Rating with a series-best 248 laps led while running 84.4 percent of his laps inside the Top 15. The win was a bit surprising since he has just two Top 5s, four Top 10s and a rather dismal 21.1 AFP overall. But again, he has really picked up the pace at HMS in recent seasons and can be trusted for Fantasy purposes.
Penske Racing’s Joey Logano ($10,200) checks in 10th in Driver Rating over the past five stops at Homestead, leading 72 laps and posting just 69.4 percent of his laps inside the Top 15. Only two of his seven career starts at HMS have resulted in Top 10 finishes, and he has never won at the track. Sure, he has a fourth-place finish under his belt, but he has also bombed out in 39th place with a DNF in the seven starts and he is a risky Fantasy play given his mediocre numbers over the years at the track.
Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick ($10,700) has the highest DFS salary of the non-championship contenders, and he leads all active drivers with a 7.2 AFP in 15 career starts. He has never finished worse than 20th while posting 13 finishes inside the Top 10, seven inside the Top 5 and one win with 236 laps led. Over the past five starts he has a 106.1 Driver Rating with 120 laps led and a 5.8 AFP, best among all drivers over the past five years.
SHR’s Tony Stewart ($7,500) will ride off into the sunset in what is expected to be his final race, at least as a full-time driver/owner. We saw Jeff Gordon retire last season only to return as an injury replacement, and as an owner Stewart and die-hard driver it is certainly within the realm of possibility that this is not Smoke’s last race. If it is his last race he has the chance to go out with a bang. He leads all drivers in the field with three career wins at Homestead-Miami Speedway with four Top 5s, seven Top 10s and 450 laps led while posting a 14.9 AFP in 16 career starts. As such he is a great value in DFS, and at $17.25 Stewart is a solid No. 3 or 4 driver in NASCAR’s Fantasy Live.
Penske’s Brad Keselowski ($9,500) rolls into HMS ranked fourth in Driver Rating at 106.2, leading 106 laps while running 91.4 percent of his laps inside the Top 15. In eight tries he has yet to come away with a victory at Homestead-Miami, but he has recorded a pair of Top 5 finishes with six runs inside the Top 20. He has never finished lower than 25th.
JGR’s Denny Hamlin ($8,600) just missed out on a spot for the championship, but he shouldn’t be overlooked in Homestead. He has a 101.0 Driver Rating over his past five outings, checking in seventh. He has 122 laps led with 72.4 percent of his laps inside the Top 15. The driver of the No. 11 has posted a 10.7 AFP in 11 career starts with two wins, four Top 5s and seven Top 10s while leading 213 laps. He is a dangerous driver at this track, and he comes with a fairly small price compared to some of the other bigger names on the board.
Furniture Row Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. ($10,000) has a 102.6 Driver Rating over the past five starts at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He has led just 19 laps during the span, but he has turned in an impressive 8.4 AFP. MTJ ranks third among all active drivers with a 10.2 AFP in 11 career starts while finishing in the Top 10 on seven different occasions. He has never won, but he has been a runner-up at the track and he has finished outside the Top 20 just once.
Among the lower priced DFS options, HScott Motorsports driver Clint Bowyer ($7,000) has never won in 10 career starts at Homestead. However, he has three Top 5s and six Top 10s with eight Top 20s and a 14.1 AFP. He has a good chance to outperform his salary expectations, but do not expect many laps led. He has led the pack around the track just once in his 10 races at Homestead.
JTG Dougherty Racing’s A.J. Allmendinger ($7,200) is finishing up strong. He has five straight Top 20 finishes, including three Top 10s, over his past five races. The good times should continue to roll for Allmendinger, who has a Top 5, two Top 10s and five Top 20s in seven career starts at Homestead-Miami, posting a 19.6 AFP. In the same price range, Roush Fenway Racing’s Greg Biffle ($7,300) cannot be overlooked for Fantasy purposes. He has three career wins at the track with four Top 5s, nine Top 20s and 175 laps led with a respectable 17.0 AFP in 14 starts. He has been 18th or better in each of his past four races this season, and if he can post 32-40 Fantasy points he will more than pay for himself.
Biffle’s teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. ($7,100) stumbled to a 23rd-place finish last week in Phoenix, and he is averaging a 26.3 AFP over his past three starts. He is a driver to fade at Homestead, as he has never finished higher than 22nd at the track in four career starts. He has a terrible 26.3 AFP during the span. RFR’s Trevor Bayne ($6,700) is also a fade option, as he has a 29.6 AFP in five career starts with two DNFs at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Lastly, Richard Petty Motorsports driver Brian Scott ($5,600) announced he is retiring from full-time NASCAR competition after Sunday’s race. He has just one career start at Homestead and he finished 28th. At this price range if he can replicate that result he would be a great No. 6 DFS option. He turned in three fastest laps last weekend in Phoenix and he could race well in his final career start. While Scott is wrapping up a career, rookie Gray Gaulding ($4,600) is just getting started. He will make his third-career Cup start. He has averaged just a 38.0 AFP in two outings so far, but at this price level he will allow you to load up on four stud drivers for the season finale.
NASCAR FANTASY LINEUPS FOR HOMESTEAD-MIAMI
|No.||Driver||DraftKings Salary||No.||Driver||Fantasy Live Salary||No.||Yahoo! Sports Driver|
|1||Carl Edwards||$9,700||1||Carl Edwards||$27.00||1||Kyle Busch|
|2||Matt Kenseth||$9,300||2||Denny Hamlin||$26.50||2||Martin Truex Jr.|
|3||Denny Hamlin||$8,600||3||Kurt Busch||$23.50||3||Carl Edwards|
|4||Ryan Blaney||$7,700||4||A.J. Allmendinger||$16.75||4||Chase Elliott|
|5||Greg Biffle||$7,300||5||Matt DiBenedetto||$5.75|