The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season is almost over, and after Sunday’s race at ISM Raceway, the four drivers who will compete for the title at Homestead will be set. The track formally known as Phoenix will host the Can-Am 500, and there should be no shortage of excitement now that seven drivers are fighting for the final three spots following the penalty levied to Kevin Harvick.
If things go according to plan, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. are probably going to join Joey Logano at Homestead. Even after the penalty, Kevin Harvick is in decent shape because of how strong he has been at Phoenix. However, things get interesting if any of the other four playoff drivers win this weekend because it will likely doom Harvick’s chances, unless of course either Busch or Truex has trouble of their own.
From a fantasy standpoint, Phoenix opens up a few more lineup possibilities than we have seen while making multiple trips to mile-and-a-half tracks recently. ISM is a flatter track with two very different sets of corners, and the unique layout treats some drivers better than others.
Many of the top drivers still get the job done here, but you can also find some great alternatives to the Big 3 and the top options in the other tiers for the Driver Group Game. If you are sitting on one start remaining from the Big 3 in the DGG for example, I’d recommend saving it for the season finale at Homestead and going with someone else this weekend.
With just two races remaining, it is pretty easy to budget your starts in the Driver Group Game. You will want to make sure to use your best options if you have them available, but you don’t need to hit the panic button if you don’t have all the big names at your disposal this weekend.
1. Kevin Harvick, Jimmy Johns / Busch Beer
He punched his ticket to Homestead with his win last weekend at Texas, but Harvick might not be finished winning races. After all, he won the fall race at Phoenix last year, giving him nine wins at the track overall. Harvick has reeled off 10 straight Top 10s here, winning six times and posting 2.9 average finish over that stretch. He should anchor lineups in any fantasy format this weekend.
2. Kyle Busch, M&M’s
Busch has been piling up strong finishes at Phoenix, posting eight Top 10s in the last nine races and logging five Top 5s in the last six. He led 128 laps and finished second here in March and has led 70-plus laps in three of the last five races. Busch should be an excellent option for any fantasy lineup.
3. Chase Elliott, NAPA Auto Parts
He has made five Cup Series starts at Phoenix, logging four Top 10s and posting a 6.8 average finish. Elliott was the runner-up in the fall race here last year, and he finished third in March. He is a no-brainer Group B option in the Driver Group Game, and he is a Top 5 option in any format this weekend.
4. Denny Hamlin, FedEx
Hamlin led 193 laps at Phoenix last fall before unraveling in the closing laps as he tried to race his way into the championship race, but he bounced back in March by leading 33 laps and finishing fourth. He now has five Top 10s in his last six starts here and has the dominator upside you look for at DraftKings.
5. Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row
Phoenix hasn’t been his best track historically, but Truex has delivered back-to-back strong runs here. He finished third in the fall race last season, and he picked up another Top 5 back in March. Truex hasn’t led many laps here, which limits his DFS appeal, but there is no reason to think he won’t contend for another Top 5 Sunday.