Jamie McMurray, Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing

by KFFL Staff on January 19, 2011 @ 18:00:00 PDT

 


Jamie McMurray | No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/McDonald's Chevrolet | Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing

Jamie McMurray

To say that McMurray had a big 2010 would be an understatement. His reunion with team owner Chip Ganassi brought victories in both the Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400; his season nearly ended with a trip to the Chase. He finished the year 14th in points with three victories and nine top-five finishes.

His time with Roush Fenway Racing never yielded the results that everyone expected, but the years of struggles were instantly forgotten with his win in the season opener. His nine top-five finishes were the most of any non-Chasers, and eight of those finishes were top-threes. He was either really good or really bad at the start of the year, which attributed to his 16.4 average finish in 2010. However, that mark improved to 13.3 in the final 15 events.

One season may or not be an accurate projection of what to expect from McMurray in the future, but fantasy owners have to find his 2010 season encouraging. He finished in the top five in two of the four superspeedway events, averaged a top-10 finish at the road courses, and averaged a top-15 finish at short tracks. After being largely written off with RFR, it's time to welcome McMurray back to fantasy relevance.

Expecting McMurray to suddenly become a top-10 driver is probably asking a bit much. In his best years with Ganassi, he was always just outside the top 10. He can be a No. 2 option in Draft and Play leagues, but he still needs to be used at only specific tracks in other fantasy formats. McMurray isn't an elite fantasy option, but he is no longer an afterthought.

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