NASCAR playoff drivers in trouble: No. 4 – Daniel Suarez
Championship odds: +10000
I was firmly on board the Daniel Suarez hype train after his second season with the up-and-coming Trackhouse Racing Team, when he earned his first career NASCAR Cup Series victory and qualified for the playoffs for the first time in his six seasons in the sport.
He advanced to the round of 12 and had a shot to advance further before a disastrous race at the ever-unpredictable Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.
This season, he looked like he was going to be a force to be reckoned with, opening up the season with three straight top 10 finishes at three very different race tracks.
But in the 20 races since then, he has added just four more top 10 finishes — and only four additional top 20 results — and plummeted down the point standings to 18th place, leading to speculation that he might even be released before his contract is due to expire at the end of next year.
Suarez came close to securing a playoff spot at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a second place finish in a rain-shortened race in July, but other than that, he has only placed higher than seventh once since February, when he was two for two in terms of top seven finishes.