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Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, drives during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sept. 16.
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, drives during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sept. 16. Photo by Sean Gardner / Getty Images via AFP

Breaking down the field and drivers to monitor ahead of Sunday’s playoff race at Texas Motor Speedway with our NASCAR power rankings and picks for the Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500.

The first three races of the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs are complete. Chris Buescher’s victory at Bristol last Saturday brought the total number of drivers who have won a race this season to 19. The fact that there have only been 29 races run is a pretty clear indicator of the increased parity that the Next Gen Car has brought to the sport.

This Sunday, the NASCAR Playoffs Round of 12 begins with the Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. A win this weekend would be massive for any of the remaining playoff drivers considering what lies ahead. 

The two races that follow Texas in the Round of 12 will take place at Talladega and the Charlotte ROVAL. Given how unpredictable those tracks are, a win this week on the 1.5-mile oval at Texas Motor Speedway becomes that much more important for the championship contenders.

Check out our NASCAR betting picks and power rankings for the 2022 Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 (odds via DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, BetMGM). 

AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 500 NASCAR Betting Odds

(Note: Table includes outright odds for the remaining 12 playoff drivers)

Denny Hamlin+550+600+700
Kyle Larson+600+700+650
Christopher Bell+700+650+700
Chase Elliott+800+800+800
Ryan Blaney+1000+1000+1100
Ross Chastain+1000+1100+850
William Byron+1200+1200+1200
Joey Logano+2000+1800+2000
Alex Bowman+2500+2000+2100
Daniel Suarez+3000+2500+2000
Austin Cindric+5000+4000+3500
Chase Briscoe+10000+6600+6500

AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 500 NASCAR Power Rankings

10. Brad Keselowski (+10000 via DraftKings)

Brad Keselowski’s first season as an owner-driver has largely been filled with frustration. However, after leading several laps last week in a race that his teammate ultimately won, the No. 6 team and all of RFK Racing come to Texas with momentum. Keselowski has three straight top-10 finishes in points-paying races here and was ninth in the All-Star Race earlier this year.

9. William Byron (+1200 via DraftKings)

Through 29 races, William Byron has two wins but only eight top-10 finishes to his name. The key point for bettors to note is that three of those top-10 results have come in the last three races. So far in the NASCAR Playoffs, Byron has finishes of eighth, sixth, and third. Look no further than a runner-up in last year’s playoff race at Texas for proof that he can run well here.

8. Kyle Busch (+1000 via BetMGM)

While Kyle Busch may be out of the NASCAR Playoffs, he is hardly out of the picture with regard to winning another race before the season’s end. Busch won this very race just two years ago. He was also out of the championship playoffs in that start. Over the last 10 races at Texas Motor Speedway, Busch has driven the No. 18 to an average finish of 8.7. 

7. Kevin Harvick (+2400 via FanDuel)

Going back several years, Kevin Harvick has been one of the best at navigating Texas Motor Speedway. Over the last 10 Cup Series races, he has scored three outright wins and a 4.9 average finish, which is tops among all drivers. He has only had one finish worse than eighth over that span. Harvick makes for an interesting play at 24-1 odds this week.

6. Chase Elliott (+800 via DraftKings)

After crashing out of the Southern 500, Chase Elliott had to sweat out advancing to the Round of 12 a bit more than he would’ve liked. Alas, the regular-season points champion made it through and now has his sights set on a track that hasn’t been overly kind to him in recent years. A seventh-place showing in last year’s playoff race marked Elliott’s first top 10 at Texas since 2018.

5. Kyle Larson (+700 via BetMGM)

As the defending AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 500 race winner, it’s no surprise to see Kyle Larson and the No. 5 team priced among the NASCAR betting favorites this week. Interestingly enough, however, last year’s outright win is the only real success Larson has had recently at Texas. In five other points-paying races since fall 2017, Larson finished outside the top 30 three times.

4. Joey Logano (+2000 via DraftKings)

The NASCAR betting market is clearly down on Joey Logano after two straight finishes outside the top 15. When it comes to Texas, Logano is one of the best in the sport. Despite a 30th-place showing last year, his average finish of 8.5 over the last 10 races here ranks second among all drivers. The No. 22 car also finished fourth in the Team Penske-dominated All-Star Race earlier this year.

3. Christopher Bell (+700 via DraftKings)

He may not have a victory to show for it, but Christopher Bell was one of the hottest drivers in the Round of 16. Prior to last week’s race at Bristol, Bell was the only playoff driver who had already advanced through to the Round of 12. With back-to-back third-place finishes in his last two starts at Texas and Bell figures to be a factor again on Sunday.

2. Ryan Blaney (+1100 via FanDuel)

The first time that the Next Gen Car ran at Texas Motor Speedway was earlier this year in the NASCAR All-Star Race. Ryan Blaney put the No. 12 car in victory lane that night, but he has failed to win a points-paying race all season. Considering how strong he tends to be at this track, that very well could change on Sunday. Blaney’s 111.1 average driver rating over the last five races at Texas ranks second among all drivers.

1. Denny Hamlin (+700 via FanDuel)

Denny Hamlin has plenty of motivation in these playoffs as he makes another attempt at capturing his first career NASCAR Cup Series Championship. He was the runner-up at both Darlington and Kansas and, despite cutting a tire down last week, still managed to finish ninth. Texas has been a feast-or-famine kind of track for the No. 11 car in recent years, but Hamlin did win here as recently as 2019. Bettors should also note that he won at the highly comparable Charlotte Motor Speedway oval earlier this year. 

Where to Bet on NASCAR Picks

FanDuel Sportsbook
Caesars Sportsbook
DraftKings Sportsbook

SEE ALSO: All picksodds, and sports betting news. Be sure to check out’s community forums and betting tools.

AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 500 power rankings picks made 9/22/2022 at 4:59 p.m. ET