The rankings below are based on a mixture of expected output and DraftKings’ NASCAR salaries for Sunday. The order is not based on the highest projected fantasy totals, but rather by the value of each driver.
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1. Kyle Larson ($11,100) — The only way Larson loses this race is if the Las Vegas race ends with restart madness. That’s not a stretch of the imagination. Larson should dominate as he has at every 1.5 mile track, and this race could very easily end with a series of chaotic restarts similar to Larson’s loss at Kansas.
2. Denny Hamlin ($10,500) — Last fall at Las Vegas, a caution at an inopportune moment cost Hamlin the win. Earlier this season, Hamlin lost because Larson was simply better. Hamlin had a top-3 car, but he had nothing for Larson.
3. Kyle Busch ($10,800) — In Kyle Busch’s eyes, his team struggles with the setup at Las Vegas. His results are fine, but since this is Rowdy’s home track, he expects to dominate every time. Busch won at a comparable intermediate track in Kansas, so beating Larson is not impossible.
4. Chase Elliott ($10,200) — The Hendrick cars were fast in the first Las Vegas race. Elliott started the race out strong, but suffered damage during an early pit stop. From there, he struggled and he would later spin and bring out a caution.
5. Brad Keselowski ($8,700) — This has been an underwhelming season for Keselowski. He almost won the championship last season, if not for a bad day on pit road at Phoenix, Now, he is barely worth consideration each week. He nearly won the first Las Vegas race, so DFS players should force themselves to consider him on Sunday.
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6. William Byron ($8,900) — Get ready to hear about the greasy first pit stall at Las Vegas. Byron had just won at Homestead and had another fast race car at Las Vegas in March, but he kept losing track position on pit road because of his pit stall.
7. Alex Bowman ($8,300) — The Hendrick cars were great at Las Vegas, so what happened to Bowman? He barely made it to the end of stage 2 due to a vibration and smoke in the cabin. He did not make it to the end of stage 3. Bowman blew a tire and had to pit under green.
8. Ryan Blaney ($9,100) — Las Vegas seems like it should be a Ryan Blaney track. He earned eight fast lap points in the spring race and finished fifth. If not for the Hendrick cars, Blaney could have easily earned the most fantasy points at Las Vegas.
9. Kevin Harvick ($9,300) — It looks like SHR is figuring out the 750 package (high horsepower, low downforce), but it remains to be seen whether this team can compete in the 550 package. This package has seldom been raced this season. It wouldn’t be a surprise to find out that SHR punted on this package and focused on the 750.
10. Martin Truex Jr ($9,700) — He had a borderline top-5 car in the spring Las Vegas race. That might not seem remarkable, but traditionally, JGR struggles in the spring race. If the JGR setups were close in the spring, then they may have a shot at knocking off Larson in the second Las Vegas race.
11. Joey Logano ($9,900) — The spring Las Vegas race was one of many times that the No. 22 car has struggled in the low horsepower, high downforce package this season. Logano has not been a top-10 driver in this package in 2021.
12. Tyler Reddick ($7,800) — There is a high line at Las Vegas and Reddick will be there, but it’s doubtful that he will make it work. Las Vegas has a high groove that anyone can run and find speed, but it’s not up against the wall where Reddick has an advantage.
13. Christopher Bell ($8,500) — Kansas and Las Vegas are comparable tracks. At Kansas, Bell would have earned a top-10 finish, but he wrecked during the late race restarts. At Las Vegas, he did earn a top-10 finish.
14. Kurt Busch ($9,500) — A week ago, Kurt Busch had a similar price despite starting closer to the front and having struggled all season in the 750 package. For the same price, he’s starting further back and he won the last 550 package race at a 1.5 mile track (Atlanta).
15. Chris Buescher ($7,300) — Some unexpected drivers earned top-15 finishes at Las Vegas in the spring because of a fortuitous caution during stage 3. Buescher was not one of those drivers. He was a top-15 driver all race long.
16. Michael McDowell ($5,900) — Everyone has forgotten about McDowell. His playoff starting position ruined his DFS potential. Also, the 750 package races aren’t great for Front Row Motorsports. At the cookie cutter intermediate tracks with the 550 package, McDowell has been strong over the last two seasons.
17. Chase Briscoe ($6,000) — The No. 14 team seems to have found some speed recently, but the problem is that recent tracks have little in common with Las Vegas. SHR’s discoveries in the 750 package aren’t that helpful and the two most recent low horsepower races were at Atlanta and Michigan.
18. Cole Custer ($7,100) — Statistically, this is a bad pick. Custer is starting in the back because he is struggling. This comes as little surprise because Custer was just an above-average driver in superior equipment in the Xfinity Series. However, plenty of times bad plays come through in DFS NASCAR because of the magic of the late race caution.
19. Ryan Newman ($7,500) — Even during bad times, Ryan Newman should finish inside the top 20. Unfortunately, 15th to 20th won’t work at his price in GPPs. What Newman needs is a late race caution that turns Las Vegas into a junkyard after a series of restarts. This is not uncommon in the 550 package.
20. J.J. Yeley ($5,400) — Let’s show J.J. Yeley some love. He’s earned top 30 finishes in five of six races this season. He’s starting dead last and can earn a top 30 without this race going bananas at the end. If this race does go crazy, then he can easily earn a top 25 and would very likely be optimal.
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