NASCAR analysts rank a driver who couldn't get past the second round above two championship contenders


Kyle Larson couldn't even make the final eight drivers in this past season's playoffs, but the analysts at still believe he deserves to rank higher than Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski, two of the championship four drivers.

At number three overall, behind championship winner Martin Truex Jr. and runner-up Kyle Busch, the analysts are high on Larson's skills despite his bad fortune to finish the year.

Motorsport's Nick DeGroot explained his ranking, "Larson appeared to be the one guy that could take the fight to Martin Truex Jr. on a regular basis, but misfortune found him in a big way when the championship playoffs came around. He won four races, but all came during the regular season. He actually suffered four DNFs in the final five races, but no doubt he'll be back with a vengeance in 2018."

Larson's early playoff exit could be chalked up to bad luck, but that's NASCAR. While we might take exception to him being placed higher than two of the final four drivers, we can't argue that Larson didn't look to be the strongest challenge to Truex's dominance during the regular season. A little better luck next year and Larson could be in the mix to the very end.


Related: Kyle Larson may not have had the postseason success he wanted, but he still won a big award