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PGA DFS Picks: John Deere Classic

This edition of PGA DFS picks should help you dominate your contests at the John Deere Classic – even if some of the world’s best golfers are overseas!

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Full but weak field of 156 golfers
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 65 and ties play the weekend
    • No 2020 tourney; Defending (2019) champion: Dylan Fritelli (-21)
    • The course: TPC Deere Run (Silvis, IL) – D.A. Weibring design
    • 7,268 yards, Par 71
    • Bentgrass/Poa Greens
    • Shotmaker’s course emphasizes driving accuracy , wedge play and putting
    • Plenty of birdies available at TPC Deere run
  • Focus Stat Categories: SG: Approach, Birdie or Better %. SG: Off the Tee, Opportunities Gained, SG: Putting (Bentgrass), Proximity (125-150), Driving Accuracy

The Picks:

Elite PGA DFS (DK $9,500 and up):

Daniel Berger (DK $11,100) – He’s the best golfer in the field and the only guy above $11K, so expectations are high – but Berger has played decent golf this year (T7 at the U.S. Open, T3 at the birdie-fest Byron Nelson). Scores could get as low as -20 this year and we’ll need birdie machines like Berger in our builds.

Sungjae Im (DK $10,700) – Im was making birdies last week and his game seems to perfectly fit this layout. He was T26 last year in his John Deere debut but I really think he’s a near lock for a Top 15 this week. I’m not a guy who uses him a lot in PGA DFS, but this is the right week to give him a shot.

Brian Harman ($10,400) – The lefty has been inside the Top 20 in seven of his last eight tournaments – or every time he’s made the cut in that stretch (MC at PGA Championship). Harman won at TPC Deere Run in 2014, and he’s 5-for-7 overall at this venue with four Top 25 finishes.

Russell Henley (DK $9,900) – Henley should have no trouble this week in Illinois and he’s my pick to win even though Harman and Berger are a little more popular. He finished solo second in 2019 and comes in under the $10K price tag threshold in PGA DFS.

Also consider: Cam Davis, Kevin Streelman, Kevin Na (GPP)

Mid-Range PGA DFS (DK $7,600 to $9,400):

Si Woo Kim (DK $9,100) – If Si Woo is finding fairways this week we could see him showing off some of his “go-low” abilities. I could see him firing an opening round 62 and taking the early lead, so keep him in mind for first round leader.

Seamus Power (DK $9,000) – Power is coming off a solid putting week and he’s 3-for-3 at the John Deere Classic with two top 25s. The price is a little bit higher than we’re used to, but in this field he’s easily one of the better talents, especially on the greens.

Patton Kizzire (DK $8,900) – He’s a GPP pick only for the reasons Sia laid out in his Initial Picks article – mainly his ability to rack up birdies and eagles when he’s finding fairways. He and Si Woo are both risk-reward plays on a course that is relatively easy to tackle.

Maverick McNealy (DK $8,800) – McNealy fits the bill as a birdie-maker with incredible upside, and this could be the year he breaks through at the John Deere (T44 in 2018). There’s always the chance he fades over the weekend and finishes outside the Top 15, but I like his chances of posting a Top 10 this week.

Zach Johnson (DK $8,500) – ZJ has a glorious history at the JDC, with four top 5 finishes in his past seven trips and a win way back in 2012. His form leaves a bit to be desired, but he’s less of a risk in PGA DFS here at a venue he loves.

Doc Redman (DK $8,200) – Redman is another risky golfer who feels like feast or famine in DFS. Last week he was in my player pool and missed the cut, so we’ll go right back to the well and hope his putter does its job this week.

Dylan Frittelli (DK $7,800) – When Frittelli won here in 2019, he played the weekend bogey-free 65-64 to win by two strokes. He’s struggled more on courses where you can make big scores, so I expect a big rebound this week (his form has not been great) and a possible Top 15.

Also consider: Alex Noren, Hank Lebioda (GPP), Ryan Moore, Beau Hossler, Pat Perez, Richy Werenski

Value PGA DFS (DK $6,600 to 7,500):

Chez Reavie (DK $7,500) – We shouldn’t spend a ton of time in the lower $7K range this week, because there’s an easy path to avoiding most of these riskier golfers, but we have to consider Reavie, who checks all the boxes this week at this venue. It’s always about timing with Reavie, and even though he missed the cut last week his overall form has been good.

Henrik Norlander (DK $7,300) – Norlander seems to make a lot of sense for TPC Deere Run, because he’s not very long, but he’s accurate off the tee and solid T2G. There’s always risk with the guy, but I like the price and his ability to fare well in this weaker field.

Ryan Armour (DK $7,100) – Sia and Joel gave him the vote of confidence in the Breakdown and while he hasn’t had much success at this venue yet, we’ve seen plenty of golfers go from missing the cut (both in the week before and the year before) to contending.

Satoshi Kodaira (DK $7,000) – Throw out last week’s stumble and the form is staggering. He’s essentially a $8K golfer priced at $7K, so I’m buying in all formats, including single entry. The guy loves Bentgrass and he’s got Top 10 upside.

Adam Schenk (DK $6,900) – Schenk seems priced a little low for his upside as well, and Sia likes his 100-1 longshot status as an outright bet. There’s a few guys in the “last piece for your GPP” range under $7K here, and he’s probably the best of them.

John Huh (DK $6,800) – Huh gets the nod for his course history and the fact that he’ll be off most people’s radar. But in a weak field like this, it’s not bad time to bet on a resurgence, especially on Bentgrass.

Bronson Burgoon (DK $6,700) – I often play Burgoon on birdie fest courses, and we get a nice discount in a weak field here despite a T17 at the last real birdie fest he played in – the AT&T Byron Nelson. You hope for a made cut and two super low rounds, which he can do.

More value golfers to consider: Patrick Rodgers, Scott Stallings, Vaughn Taylor, Tyler Duncan, Roger Sloan, Sam Ryder, Ben Martin (GPP), Andrew Landry (GPP), Scott Brown (GPP), Wes Roach (GPP)

Longshot Punts PGA DFS (DK $6,500 and under):

Kristoffer Ventura (DK $6,400) – I’ll keep using him in this price range because of his putting ability, and this sorter course should give him more of a chance than the longer tracks.

Michael Kim (DK $6,100) – He’s a former winner here and he loves both the venue and the putting surface. He’s missed a lot of cuts but he’s the best $6,100 golfer I see down here. He’s worth using in one out of 20 GPPs.

Additional GPP punts: Adam Long, Bill Haas, Bo Van Pelt, Chase Seiffert, Josh Teator, Brian Gay

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