Hotlanta will do the honors of kicking off NASCAR DFS March Madness with the 6th Cup race of the year with the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. The DFS tiered rankings is a proven tool that has helped many DFS players bag tournaments in prior years, and it has personally helped me take down first place prize pools in several instances.
I rank every driver and tier them based on price. There is no sense to compare Chase Elliot to Quin Houff, but comparing Chase Elliot to Kevin Harvick, for example, tends to make sense. The rankings will be posted first and represent the “initial pass” on my approach to the slate.
The notes represent my “second pass” and will provide more insight into how I am building lineups, what I have learned from looking around the industry, and mention any situations where I’m “hotter” or “colder” on anyone than when I set the rankings. For example, I may mention that there is a large gap in my interest level after the top three ranked drivers in a given tier. Another example would be to point out that drivers ranked 1-3 are interchangeable in terms of my interest. My suggestion is to enter multiple lineups and use the rankings and notes as a guide as you build lineups.
If you are a more serious player building 40+ lineups, I do suggest purchasing a lineup optimizer tool. These are affordable for our more advanced players and you can get them relatively cheap – especially if you are purchasing for NASCAR only. We will definitely look to partner with a third party or build one in-house for next season. If you need help selecting one, I’m here to help explain and recommend what you need. To reiterate – this is only for advanced players and you do not need this unless you have full command of the tool. In fact, it can do more harm than good if you do not know what you are doing.
NASCAR DFS Tiered Rankings – Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500
Tier 1 Notes
The dominators this season have been out of this world in terms of low ownership. With that being said, it is a good time to remember that literally any of these guys can lead laps and win the race. Remember to enter multiple lineups and consider treating this tier a little different than the rest.
Kevin Harvick’s track history at Atlanta is one of the more dominant data points in all of NASCAR DFS. I even nerfed him down some with his recent form, and he still came out as the highest-scoring projected dominator by a decent margin. My other main dominators all start toward the front so I expect place differential among this tier will not be much of a factor except for KFB having that potential. Even with the Penske cars being ranked towards the back of this tier for me, I do not plan to fade either one. Especially with how the pole-sitter has been fading this season more than ever.
Tier 2 Notes
Kurt Busch represents one of the best track histories here behind the #4 car, and I honestly wish he was starting a little further back. Even though Reddick received a slight advantage on the final rankings, I do think it is fair to say Kurt has the highest finishing position upside in this tier. However, he has a much lower floor than Reddick due to that 11th starting spot. My plan is to get plenty of exposure to both and use some of the drivers ranked behind them as GPP pivots. I do think Bell and Byron will be two of the lowest owned drivers above 8k if you want to get weird and be different.
Tier 3 Notes
How many times can Cole Custer tank our lineups? I do get the frustration regardless of the fact that what happened last week was out of his control. While I do think he has the most upside in his tier, Ryan Newman is my other main play just due to his experience and high-floor starting position. I’ll be mixing in both to my lineups on Sunday. Briscoe and Suarez are my favorite place differential pivots off of these two and Chris Buescher is the salary-saving option. I will say that AD is a GPP target but struggled on the rankings due to the starting spot of 13.
Tier 4 Notes
Don’t go too heavy on anyone in this range, and remember the ceiling for scoring for these drivers drops the lower the salary. Alfredo received the highest ranking, but you will notice the projections have many of these guys scoring low and within a few points of one another.
Platform Insights (DraftKings/FanDuel)
I’m adding this section just to point out a few things across platforms as I’m building lineups. As a reminder, place differential, laps led, and fastest laps are more important on DraftKings. FanDuel is all about finishing position so your goal should be to get as many drivers that can finish inside the top 10/top 5.
- I have more KFB interest over on FD as 8th highest-priced driver versus 2nd highest-priced on DK. Remember, dominator points are more important on DK so that makes him a higher risk to pay off the price even if he does score place-differential points.
- Truex is obviously in play on both sites, but his price on DK is more intriguing compared to the 2nd highest price on FD.
- Christopher Bell is a better play on DK than FD but should be a lower owned GPP play across the board
- Cindric should be considered in all formats and platforms due to his starting spot but is dirt cheap over on FD at 6.2k.
- Ryan Newman is too cheap on both sites relative to his starting position