2021 Silly Season

Snappy D

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Yes it’s incredibly early and I don’t think we have a thread yet, but we just got our first Pockrass Missile to start the driver change season....
 

Kiante

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I'm calling it now, either Jones or Keselowski is going to the 48.

Cindric will takeover the 2 car or possibly Matt D moves over to the 2 and Cindric to the 21. Maybe Brad resigns with Penske, but I think he leaves.
 

DIDIT

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Part of me thinks Brad K will go to the 48. But, that would be a big hit to Penske from a sponsor perspective and driver recognition. If Brad leaves and Penske keeps the 2 car in 2021, does anyone think Matt D might be in it with Cindric going to the Wood Brothers?
 

wi_racefan

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NBC put a list out of all the drivers in contact years
https://nascar.nbcsports.com/2020/03/06/nascar-kyle-larson-brad-keselowski-ryan-blaney-alex-bowman-erik-jones-aric-almirola-matt-dibenedetto-clint-bowyer-bubba-wallace-ty-dillon-corey-lajoie-free-agency/

Kyle Larson, No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing

Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Ford, Team Penske

Erik Jones, No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing

Alex Bowman, No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports

Clint Bowyer, No. 14 Ford, Stewart-Haas Racing

Matt DiBenedetto, No. 21 Ford, Wood Brothers Racing

Aric Almirola, No. 10 Ford, Stewart-Haas Racing

Ty Dillon, No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing

Bubba Wallace, No. 43 Chevrolet, Richard Petty Motorsports

Corey LaJoie, No. 32 Ford, GoFas Racing
 

Biggreen695

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Not saying it wont happen but Austin Cindric taking a competitive ride in cup would be a crying shame. Hes done absolutely nothing to prove hes ready besides having $$$

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Joker

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Definitely thinking Brad to the 48. Probably gonna see Matty D to the 2 and Cindric to the 21.

If Larson leaves, which I'm 50/50 on, it's only to drive either the 10 or the 14 after one of those guys gets the boot and/or retires. Leaning towards the 14 at this particular juncture.
 

MRM

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I'm calling it now, either Jones or Keselowski is going to the 48.

Cindric will takeover the 2 car or possibly Matt D moves over to the 2 and Cindric to the 21. Maybe Brad resigns with Penske, but I think he leaves.
Drunk Brian France said that 2 weeks ago.
 

StandOnIt

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I could see Almirola out of the 10
If Smithfield is out Almirola is out. I can see that happening to a lot of drivers if the sponsorship disappears at this time. And they say they are reducing the costs to play in the series so that might reduce that IF it is true which I doubt a bit. Not that great an idea to ask a bunch of millionaires how to reduce costs. Guys like Penske, Hendrick and Toyota have enough influence that they can leverage sponsorship to a driver if need be. Maybe Childress, and Roush a bit, but most of the rest have to work their tails off to get backing IMO.
 

Snappy D

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I'll wageri f Brad leaves(My BOLD Prediction BTW).... Blaney goes into the 2 to drive the flagship Penske NASCAR Cup ride and either Cindric gets moved to the 12 or Matty D gets it. Roger has moved pieces around before, Kurt to the 22 when Brad was signed. I Think history repeats itself this time because Blaney is a sponsor's dream, especially if the Captain can woo Miller Lite into sponsoring a heavier load, Blaney and Miller would be such a home run along the lines of Jr and Budweiser back in the day. Miller and Discount Tire with a pinch of Menard's would look good on a Ryan Blaney driven #2 Ford Mustang. Maybe Ryan all along was being groomed to replace Brad? Just speculation on my part and tin foil hat is on pretty tight, but we'll see.
 

Kiante

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If Smithfield is out Almirola is out. I can see that happening to a lot of drivers if the sponsorship disappears at this time. And they say they are reducing the costs to play in the series so that might reduce that IF it is true which I doubt a bit. Not that great an idea to ask a bunch of millionaires how to reduce costs. Guys like Penske, Hendrick and Toyota have enough influence that they can leverage sponsorship to a driver if need be. Maybe Childress, and Roush a bit, but most of the rest have to work their tails off to get backing IMO.
Smithfield is on a year to year basis. When and if they decide to leave, Almirola will go. I like Aric, but he's been extremely inconsistent. For all the flack Clint Bowyer gets, Aric is just as bad.

Honestly, that would be a major blow to Haas IMO with the money they give out. That's just my amateur take though.
How do you think they became millionaires! ;)
The Rick Ware method.
 

StandOnIt

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Smithfield is on a year to year basis. When and if they decide to leave, Almirola will go. I like Aric, but he's been extremely inconsistent. For all the flack Clint Bowyer gets, Aric is just as bad.

Honestly, that would be a major blow to Haas IMO with the money they give out. That's just my amateur take though.

The Rick Ware method.
Haas is a billionaire financing a F-1 team besides Nascar, it won't be a blow, they will have someone in the seat in a heartbeat.
 

Snappy D

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Haas is a billionaire financing a F-1 team besides Nascar, it won't be a blow, they will have someone in the seat in a heartbeat.
If the 10 were to open, I think the craziness of the Silly Season would be nothing that we've seen before. Just an all out free agency news cycle like the NBA's is in July.
 

Kiante

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Haas is a billionaire financing a F-1 team besides Nascar, it won't be a blow, they will have someone in the seat in a heartbeat.
I get it, but Aric got the seat because of the money behind him. Aric is a solid driver, I like him, but Smithfield along with the other brands in the B2B deal losing them would suck. It'd be more money Gene would have to put forth for the 10 car. Something he's not concerned with Smithfield on board.

The 10 car would be an interesting opening, for sure. Bubba Wallace, if he has better finishes, could be a sleeper for a team. With WWT and Coke behind him, if his performances are notable enough, he could be in the running for it if Aric is out of the seat after this season.

2020 just started and we are already talking seats for next season. This **** never stops.
 

Hawaii808

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I get it, but Aric got the seat because of the money behind him. Aric is a solid driver, I like him, but Smithfield along with the other brands in the B2B deal losing them would suck. It'd be more money Gene would have to put forth for the 10 car. Something he's not concerned with Smithfield on board.

The 10 car would be an interesting opening, for sure. Bubba Wallace, if he has better finishes, could be a sleeper for a team. With WWT and Coke behind him, if his performances are notable enough, he could be in the running for it if Aric is out of the seat after this season.

2020 just started and we are already talking seats for next season. This **** never stops.
I would go nuts to see Bubba in the 10...

But it seems like the 10 has been the most competitive "rent-a-racer" in NASCAR. Results have been about what the driver does with it (Aric more, Danica less).
 

wi_racefan

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I get it, but Aric got the seat because of the money behind him. Aric is a solid driver, I like him, but Smithfield along with the other brands in the B2B deal losing them would suck. It'd be more money Gene would have to put forth for the 10 car. Something he's not concerned with Smithfield on board.

The 10 car would be an interesting opening, for sure. Bubba Wallace, if he has better finishes, could be a sleeper for a team. With WWT and Coke behind him, if his performances are notable enough, he could be in the running for it if Aric is out of the seat after this season.

2020 just started and we are already talking seats for next season. This **** never stops.
If Aric loses the 10 car because of money I just really don't see Bubba getting it. He has a hard enough time attracting sponsorship to keep the 43 on the track and I can guarantee it takes a lot less money to get your name on the side of the 43 than it does for the 10.

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Hawaii808

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If Aric loses the 10 car because of money I just really don't see Bubba getting it. He has a hard enough time attracting sponsorship to keep the 43 on the track and I can guarantee it takes a lot less money to get your name on the side of the 43 than it does for the 10.

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No doubt Bubba in the 10 is a super long shot...but I can dream, right?

That's why we call it Silly Season.
 

LewTheShoe

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Thanks @Snappy D ... it's about damn time someone stepped up to get the 2021 Silly Season thread going..:dual9mm:

I expect the 2021 silly season to be a wild ride. I posted my opinion on the "Brad K to the 48" speculation in a prior thread, but just for the record, I'll repeat here in the official silly season depository of rumors, guesswork, and occasional facts.

Roger Penske and Brad K have a lot of sweat equity invested in each other. I believe there is a lot of mutual admiration between them as well. So I think the most likely outcome for Brad is a contract renewal at Team Penske.

Hendrick Motorsports has a ton of fans, way more than any other team, and a glorious track record of success. A lot of fans tend to think Rick Hendrick can sign any driver he wants to sign. I think this is overstated. HMS is undoubtedly a powerhouse team and a good place for any driver in search of a new gig, but it's not the only great team. Brad has been "my driver" for nearly a decade, since 2011. If he does leave Penske, I hope it is for the 48 at HMS. But I predict he remains in The Deuce.
 

kyle busch 18

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It wont be larson or brad K. They have no reason to leave their current teams.

Eric jones will be the new driver for #48

Nobody else really makes any sense. Gibbs needs a car for bell and jones will be the odd man out. Hendrick knows this
 

Team Penske

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Penske's success started with Brad and he is sill performing quite well.
Brad was instrumental in bringing on board Joey which was another step forward for Penske.
Roger will keep Brad for at least 1 more contract (3 yrs) for the simple reason, "there is no drivers available" that can out perform Brad and represent the company with his family values.
SHR has nothing to offer any quality driver and are only rent your ride for sponsored drivers. HMS has turned to the younger drivers. I predict the 48 may go to a new cup driver.
 

StandOnIt

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SHR has nothing to offer any quality driver and are only rent your ride for sponsored drivers. HMS has turned to the younger drivers. I predict the 48 may go to a new cup driver.
SHR has 2 drivers in the top 10 going into Phoenix. Way too early IMO to make any decisions about any of it. I would say Penske with two and the Wood in the top 10 is off to a good start, but so is Hendrick and Ganassi and I doubt the Gibbs cars will stay down long

upload_2020-3-7_7-17-6.png
 

Ventisca

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Brad knows Roger handed him a Crew Chief that was a step down from Wolfe and Gordon. The reason why I like Brad is how he won a race dealing with adversity with a busted ankle. Brad will figure it out this year, and hopefully move on to a different organization next year. Roger made a statement that Brad is on the third teat -- time to depart.
 

StandOnIt

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Brad knows Roger handed him a Crew Chief that was a step down from Wolfe and Gordon. The reason why I like Brad is how he won a race dealing with adversity with a busted ankle. Brad will figure it out this year, and hopefully move on to a different organization next year. Roger made a statement that Brad is on the third teat -- time to depart.
Kez, Harvick, and Logano have been at the top of the practice chart 10, 15, and the 20 lap times in no particular order. At this time I am not buying the worse crew chief story. I would swing more to the driver and how well or not they are doing :idunno:
 

Ventisca

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Keselowski is a fighter (on track). I have confidence in his ability to figure this out, especially with the adversity.

Champ Wolfe
Champ Gordon
Other guy.
 

kyle busch 18

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Eric jones if 4th fiddle at gibbs. He will get pushed aside for bell because thats what toyota wants.

Jones grew up racing chevys his whole career and was a big jeff gordon fan. I bet he would love to race for hendrick and be back in a chevy. And I bet hendrick would love to have him. Hes the next logano. I bet they have already had talks and its probably close to a done deal already. An announcement will come later this spring just watch. Jones going to team #48
 

Formerjackman

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Keselowski is a fighter (on track). I have confidence in his ability to figure this out, especially with the adversity.

Champ Wolfe
Champ Gordon
Other guy.
What if the "other guy" just needed to be paired with the right driver to become a champion himself? There's an old German saying that there is a lid for every pot.
 

Ventisca

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Roger went all in on Logano giving him Champ Wolfe.

Roger went all in on Blaney giving him Champ Gordon and a new contract early in the season.

Roger handed Keselowski a Crew Chief to develop, not the other way around. Smart move for Roger to test Bullins with a Champ driver that can reliably get multiple wins a year, and one that is fairly analytical about the car, setup, strategy, etc.

Brad may not be eloquent, but he is thoughtful and a student of the game -- and he will fight with whatever he is handed on track. He has been slowly turned into Penske's version of a Stepford Wife and I would love to see him depart the organization and take the 48 to separate from Roger, even though I respect both.
 

StandOnIt

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I felt the crew chief change at Penske of more as a way to remind everybody to not get too comfortable with their positions. Same thing at SHR, Almirola is looking real good at Phoenix so far.
 
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