Aric Almirola | Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
Fantasy Tip: Almirola is in a tough position. Earnhart-Ganassi Racing says they are committed to fielding a fourth car, presumably the No. 8 Chevrolet, but the No. 41 car, which could be sponsored by Target, may be Almirola's new ride, too. Dizzy yet? With so much uncertainty, ignore Almirola until the team makes an announcement with regard to his status.
A.J. Allmendinger | Richard Petty Motorsports
Fantasy Tip: In what has become a whirlwind offseason for Allmendinger, the promising driver now has to take a back seat to Elliott Sadler in the No. 19 Best Buy/Stanley Tools Dodge after Sadler was replaced by Allmendinger a few days before. Sadler threatened to sue GEM for a breach of contract and was subsequently reinstated to his car. Allmendinger could find himself behind the wheel if Sadler continues to struggle, but fantasy owners can't count on that happening and waste a draft pick on him. Keep an eye out for him on your waiver wire should something change.
Chad McCumbee | Richard Petty Motorsports
Fantasy Tip: McCumbee, who has made a bit of a name for himself in the Truck Series, was hoping to land a full-time Sprint Cup ride in 2009, but the merger between Petty Enterprises and Gillett Evernham Motorsports appears to have put a damper on this coming to fruition. McCumbee is best left undrafted in all fantasy formats.
Ken Schrader | Free-agent driver
Fantasy Tip: Schrader is a free agent as far as the Sprint Cup Series goes, but he has his own Truck Series team, Ken Schrader Racing. He shouldn't be considered in fantasy drafts for the 2009 season, but he may wind up racing a few times if a team is in need of a veteran presence.
Mike Wallace | Free-agent driver
Fantasy Tip: We're calling Wallace a free agent at the moment since he won't disclose his supposed ride for the Daytona 500. In 2008, Wallace ran in the AMP Energy 500 and the Bank of America 500. The prior year he raced in the Daytona 500 and the UAW-Ford 500. His best finish in any of the races was fourth in the Daytona 500. Should he indeed have a ride for this year's Daytona 500, feel free to plug him into your lineup, but he shouldn't be drafted in any format.
Boris Said | No Fear Racing
Fantasy Tip: Said ran three races in the No Fear Racing No. 60 Dodge last year. He finished 41st (DNF - shocks) at the Toyota/Save Mart 350, 35th (DNF - accident) at the Coke Zero 400 and 24th (running) in the Centurion Boats at The Glen. He did not qualify for the Daytona 500. Said is a road course specialist, and he should be considered on those tracks as he's always threat to take the checkered flag. Don't draft him in standard fantasy formats, however.
Ron Fellows | Free-agent driver
Fantasy Tip: Filling in for Regan Smith on the two road courses in Dale Earnhardt Inc.'s No. 01 car last year, Fellows finished 29th at Infineon Raceway and 13th at Watkins Glen International. He has registered five top-10 finishes in 19 career Sprint Cup Series races. Fantasy owners shouldn't consider Fellows, even on road courses.
P.J. Jones | Free-agent driver
Fantasy Tip: Jones placed 37th in the No. 96 Toyota, of Hall of Fame Racing, in 2008. He unsuccessfully attempted to qualify for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega. It is uncertain if he will race for Hall of Fame Racing this year since they have merged with Yates Racing. Fantasy owners should not look Jones' direction in '09.
Scott Pruett | Free-agent driver
Fantasy Tip: Pruett has been a NASCAR "road course ringer" since 2000, having placed in the top five three times and the top 10 on six occasions. He didn't run in the Sprint circuit in 2007 and finished 38th after an accident in the Toyota/Save Mart 350. Pruett may find a ride for 2009 for a race or two, but he shouldn't be in consideration for fantasy owners.
Editor's note: Bryce McRae and Cory J. Bonini contributed to this analysis.
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