The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs are nearing the finish line, and some fantasy owners are hoping to celebrate championships.
Drivers are set to compete in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, in what will be the final race of the 2017 NASCAR season. All eyes will be on Martin Truex Jr., who leads the playoff standings and is looking to secure his first Cup championship. But he’ll face significant challenges from Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski.
With so much on the line at this 1 1/2-mile track, drivers could try just about anything, which could make life difficult for fantasy owners.
Whether you need help picking an A-List driver who has a shot at winning or an up-and-coming C-List racer who could help steal you some points, we’ve got you covered for the second-to-last round of your NASCAR fantasy playoffs. Here are the drivers you should give seats to, and the ones you shouldn’t, for Sunday’s race at Homestead:
Must pick: Martin Truex Jr.
Truex has been the top fantasy driver in the sport all season, and we expect him to finish on top one more time Sunday evening.
The Furniture Row Racing driver has been an absolute force on 1 1/2-mile ovals this year, logging six wins and a 2.7 average finish in 10 such races. Truex gives you your best chance to win your fantasy league this weekend.
Stay away: Kurt Busch
With so much on the line Sunday, you need drivers you can bank on for consistency. And when it comes to 1 1/2-mile tracks, Kurt Busch is not your man.
In 10 races at 1 1/2-mile ovals this season, Busch has five top-10s and five finishes of 19th or worse. The chance is there for Busch to earn you some points, but it’s too risky for our taste.
Sleeper Pick: Austin Dillon
If you’ve exhausted all you premier B-List driver starts, then give Dillon a shot this weekend.
The Richard Childress Racing driver has finished 16th or better in four straight races at 1 1/2-mile tracks. Furthermore, he has back-to-back top-15s at Homestead. We know he’s not the sexiest choice, but he might pay off.
Value pick: Erik Jones
With a championship on the line, you can’t afford to not start Jones as your C-List driver.
The Furniture Row rookie has shown top-10 speed throughout the second half of the season, including top-10 finishes in three of his last six races at 1 1/2-mile tracks. We expect similar performance from him Sunday, and wouldn’t be surprised if he sneaks into the top five.
Thumbnail photo via Peter Casey/USA TODAY Sports Images