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NASCAR DFS Cash and Value Picks for the Folds of Honor 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on DraftKings + FanDuel

Phillip Bennetzen

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NASCAR Fantasy Picks and DraftKings DFS racing advice for Blue-Emu 400 Martin Truex Jr

The field is set for Sunday’s race at Atlanta with Chase Briscoe and Ryan Blaney on the front row. Therefore, let’s briefly talk about why qualifying was scrapped, how the field got set, and the top NASCAR DFS cash picks and value selections, on DraftKings and FanDuel, for Sunday’s Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

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Practice in Lieu of Qualifying

For those, just now diving into NASCAR DFS content this week… there’s a lot to catch up on. Because of these meteoric changes to the track, NASCAR had scheduled an hour-long practice session on Friday so drivers could really get comfortable with how this new version of Atlanta would truly race – especially with everyone on the track. However, the weather had other ideas, and NASCAR had to scrap Friday’s practice session. If this were any other racing weekend, NASCAR would just give a giant “Oh, well” to its drivers and teams and force them to go off previous practice notes.

However, because NASCAR knows that any previous notes about this track are nearly worthless, NASCAR officials made the executive decision on Friday to replace Saturday’s qualifying session with the previously scheduled practice. In order to set Sunday’s field, with no qualifying session, the former 2021 pandemic formula was used. Thus, with Phoenix results impacting this week’s grid, a lot of chalk is situated in the back half of the field in a race that could look awful like a superspeedway event.

Stack the Back for Cash

With the above in mind, coinciding with Kurt Busch‘s statements from January’s test session, “Once we got out there in a group, the pace picked up by over a second with having the cars draft together. So there’s a lot of speed that you have by yourself, and things were amplified, way more than what we expected when we had just three cars drafting with each other… You’re gonna have that Daytona style feel at a mile and a half.” it makes the most sense to just approach Atlanta as one would for Daytona and or Talladega. Namely, choose the safety and certainty of place differential and finishing position points over trying to nail lap leaders and then building around them.

In typical Atlanta weeks of the past, DFS players would start cash game builds with two “dominators” and then add in drivers with place differential upside. This week, that strategy seems better reserved for tournaments, and DFS players should hope that their selections stumble their way into the fastest lap and laps led points instead of playing drivers solely based on their potential to hit those two marks. Therefore, “playing everyone” is practical in theory but isn’t helping DFS players limit their pool for cash, here are a few drivers to build around for head-to-head games and double-ups.

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Denny Hamlin, 15th ($10,100 DraftKings, $12,000 FanDuel)

Before automatically dismissing a driver, who starts higher than 20th, from cash game consideration, take a step back. What are two of the main scoring metrics that should be considered with every driver this weekend; place differential potential and finishing position upside. What does Denny Hamlin offer from the 15th starting position – place differential and finishing position upside. Furthermore, with 325 laps on the board for Sunday, Hamlin can easily make up for his perceived lack of place differential with laps led points. Hamlin’s starting position is going to become a stumbling block to several DFS players as he doesn’t precisely fit the bill of a driver starting 20th or worse. Throw that concern out the window, before finishing 37th at Daytona after Harrison Burton landed on him, Hamlin had strung together six top-seven finishes in his either previous superspeedway starts.

Brad Keselowski, 24th ($8,600 DraftKings, $7,500 FanDuel)

A ton of DFS players are going to start their rosters off with race favorite Kyle Larson, starting 21st on Sunday. If Larson were a driver with an established history of placing high and leading at superspeedways, or if this were just a normal intermediate race, then paying up for Larson makes sense. However, dating back to the start of the 2020 season, Larson’s last top 10 finish came in the Daytona 500 of 2021. In his six superspeedway starts, since 2020, Larson has just two lead-lap finishes with 0.8 laps led per event.

If people are looking for a pay-up option, who still has access to place differential, their option should be Brad Keselowski. As Keselowski’s season has waned on, his move to join forces with Jack Roush looks more and more questionable. However, the one track where Keselowski shined was at Daytona when the field was leveled as he won his Duel race, and followed that up with the most laps led in the Daytona 500 (67) and finished ninth. In his past four starts at superspeedways, Keselowski has graced the top 10 in three of those four starts compared to Larson whose best finish during that same time span is 20th.

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Martin Truex Jr., 26th ($9,200 DraftKings, $10,000 FanDuel)

An obvious name projected to get higher ownership, Truex makes this list because of the possibility that this race resembles the Xfinity race on Saturday. Should that scenario play out where the racing starts off like a superspeedway and then devolves into Michigan-style racing, Truex is perhaps the furthest starting back driver with real potential to crash the top-five. At Las Vegas, Truex ran strong all day before finishing in eighth-place. At intermediate venues last season, Truex had seven top 10 finishes in nine starts.

Corey Lajoie, 33rd ($5,300 DraftKings, $3,000 FanDuel)

One of the hesitations that DFS players should have to just play anyone and everyone is the fear that the traditional punt plays potentially lose the draft, especially if everyone isn’t on a level playing field. If that’s the case, then rosters with Greg Biffle or BJ Mcleod are going to need multiple wrecks to keep them glued to the field. While Lajoie and the Spire 7 have been nothing close to the above-mentioned drivers, his equipment should keep him in contention and allow him to use his superspeedway knack to slice through the field and contend for another top-15 finish like he did at Daytona.



Follow us on all of our social channels! Check out our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube for more great Awesemo content. Looking for more NASCAR DFS picks content? We have loads of articles, data, DraftKings and FanDuel cheat sheets and more on the Awesemo NASCAR DFS home page.

Phill Bennetzen is a father, husband, and Catholic as well as a self-professed annoying fitness guy. Phill heads up NASCAR content at Awesemo.com. You can contact Phill by emailing [email protected].

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