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In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the CJ Cup @ the Summit Club and helping you find some winning teams!Sign up NOW for WIN DAILY Premium Gold right here! Projections, wagering info, 24/7 expert chats and more!PGA DFS Course Notes:Strong field of 78 golfers replete with big namesNo cutThe course: The Summit Club (Las Vegas, NV)Par 72: 7,431 yards (Tom Fazio design)Bentgrass greensNew PGA Tour venueShould be a birdie-festResort-style course where it’s easy to keep it in playBall strikers and birdie-makers should excel hereFocus Stat Categories: SG: Approach, SG: Tee to Green, Opportunities Gained, Birdie or Better %, Eagles GainedThe Picks:Elite PGA DFS (DK $9,500 and up):Justin Thomas (DK $11,100) – JT remains an elite ball striker who excels in approach shots from all distances, which should be the main focus this week. Our boy led the PGA Tour last season in proximity to the hole from the fairway, finishing third in SG: APP and T3 in SG: T2G...
In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the Shriners Children’s Open and helping you find some winning teams!Sign up NOW for WIN DAILY Premium Gold right here! Projections, wagering info, 24/7 expert chats and more!PGA DFS Course Notes:Some big names in this full field of 156+ GolfersCut: Top 65 and ties play the weekendDefending Champ and former winners:2020 – Martin Laird (-23, beat Matthew Wolff and Austin Cook in playoff))2019 – Kevin Na (-23, beat Patrick Cantlay in playoff)2018 – DeChambeau (-21, another Cantlay second place)2017 – Cantlay (-9 in windy conditions, beat Whee Kim in playoff)Patrick Cantlay NOT in field this year (he’s obviously too cool for school now)The course: TPC Summerlin (Las Vegas, NV)Par 71: 7,255+ yardsBentgrass greensPlayed at altitude, helping shorter hittersEasier setup with shorter Par 4s and three reachable par fivesFocus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, SG: Tee-to-Green. SG: Putting (Bentgrass), Birdie ...
In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the PGA Tour’ Championship helping you find some winning teams in GPPs!
Sign up NOW for WIN DAILY Premium Gold right here! Projections, wagering info, 24/7 expert chats and more!
Patrick Cantlay (DK $13,400) – It’s going to be hard to pay the obnoxious price for the guy starting off 10 strokes under par, but the performance of Cantlay’s driver and putter in that epic playoff victory shows that he’s really in a good place (with a two shot lead over the heading into the Tour Championship. I have more interest in the other guys but will find a way to fit him into 2/10 GPPs.
Jon Rahm (DK $13,000) – After a hot start at Caves Valley, Rahm seemed to get a bit distracted and annoyed and faded down the stretch, finishing in a share of ninth place after shooting a two-under 70 in the final round of the BMW Championship. He’s only four back of the lead heading into the Tour Championship, but he’s awfully expensive, so he almost has to win to justify the price. I’ll use him in 2/10 GPPs.
Tony Finau (DK $11,800) – Finau already has a one stroke lead on Rahm and sits just three back after a blistering final round 63 that included birdies on five of his final six holes – the lowest round of the day by two shots. His confidence and putting is at an all-time high and those are traditionally the only things that have kept him from the elite tier of PGA Tour golfers.
Also consider: Bryson DeChambeau (GPP), Justin Thomas (GPP)
Dustin Johnson (DK $10,700) – I’ve got to hand it to Steven Polardi (AKA Sicily Kid) with his DJ pick last week, since I was unconvinced he had his driver figured out. Johnson’s 27 birdies were the second most in the field for the week, and East Lake, while difficult, has been one of his favorite venues. DJ also ranked fourth in SG: OTT last week and seventh in SG: Putting, so he’s got a shot at defending his title this week.
Rory McIlroy (DK 9,300) – Rory is just way too cheap given how well he’s been striking it (he ranked second in SG: OTT and fourth in SG: T2G last week). At this price he really only needs to sneak into the Top 5 for the week, and he’s only four strokes off of that slot to start the tournament. He’s a horse for the East Lake course and will be in my core for cash and single-entry GPP.
Xander Schauffele (DK 8,900) – Schauffele’s in a similar position to Rory (starting at -2) and is even $400 cheaper. Sia points out in the Initial Picks article that Xander’s true score in last year’s event was -15, and his solid course history (and track record in no-cut events) means he’s an excellent (but likely popular) value play this week.
Viktor Hovland $8,000) – Hovland immediately stuck out to me as a guy who we routinely look to in cash builds for his consistency, and even if that hasn’t ben there of late (largely due to a poor putter), the change of venue and immediacy of the Tour Championship should help him exorcise some of those demons and finish in the Top 10.
Also consider: Cameron Smith (GPP), Harris English, Sam Burns (GPP)
Brooks Koepka (DK $7,800) – Something has been off about Koepka for a while now, but he made 21 birdies last week despite some poor putting and we know he usually saves his most epic performances for high profile events. He may not have a great shot at winning, but he’s in the same starting position as McIlroy and Schauffele and comes at a severely discounted price.
Scottie Scheffler (DK $6,800) – As well as he hit the ball on approach last week, I could see Scheffler getting his driver straightened out and come out firing with a 65 or 66 and cutting the gap to five strokes of the lead after Day 1. He’s a sneaky play at this price and will be in my single-entry core.
Hideki Matsuyama (DK $6,400) – We know that Deki can make birdies in bunches when he’s rolling it good, since his ball striking remains elite on the PGA Tour. The reigning Master champ is coming off a disappointing week at Caves Valley, but he’s bound to popular at this price.
Daniel Berger (DK $5,800) – Berger will garner a ton of ownership and makes a lot of sense as a starting value piece for cash game builds, especially considering he finds a way to sneak into the Top 15 at East Lake almost every year. My GPP ownership will be predicate don where the field lands.
Joaquin Niemann (DK $5,600) – Niemann started off slowly last week but came alive with 15 birdies over his last two rounds to sneak into the Top 30. The price is way too low and he’ll be in my core of GPP value plays, possibly making the final cut for my single-entry builds.
Also consider: Sungjae Im, Jason Kokrak, Erik van Rooyen
It’s Week 2 of the FedEx Cup playoffs, and our PGA DFS picks should help us find some winning teams at the BMW Championship!
Jon Rahm (DK $11,700) – He’s No. 1 on my mixed model and is the clear top dog and betting favorite, despite the final few holes at the Northern Trust that saw him slide into solo third place. That finish was good enough for his fourth straight top 10 and 12th of 2021. No reason to move away from him this week other than the possibility he’s carrying some frustration into the BMW.
Xander Schauffele (DK $11,100) – I like the idea of Xander getting a no-cut event on the heels of a weird week that saw him crack 70 only once – a second-round 62 that was a very short-lived tie for the course record. He’s the best option over $10K – albeit a pretty expensive one – that isn’t named Rahm.
Justin Thomas (DK $10,600) – No more discounts for JT, but I love him in GPPs, where his T2G game and ability to make birdies could help him rise to the occasion. He made 66 of 68 putts inside 10 feet last week, but never seemed to follow up his opening round 63 with lights-out play. Perhaps he’s ready to do that in the second week of the playoffs, when the stakes are a little higher.
Tony Finau (DK $9,800) – I joked last week (and so did the Breakdown crew) about how “he’s not much of a threat to win,” but could be a great to help you win a GPP. Well, he won the damn thing – and that confidence boost is just what’s been holding him back in final rounds over the past few years. There’s no way I’m fading him after that gutsy performance.
Also consider: Dustin Johnson (GPP), Cameron Smith
Bryson DeChambeau (DK $9,300) – His distance and ability tot make putts seem tailored for this particular venue, and he shows up as second overall in my mixed model. While his inconsistency and preponderance to make bad decisions – and stupid bogeys – reared their ugly heads at Liberty National, he could dominate at Caves Valley, a venue where power and T2G precision are required. And I love the discount.
Patrick Cantlay (DK $9,200) – We mentioned last week that he prefers these A-24 Bentgrass greens, and that he’s third on tour in SG: T2G in 2021. Perhaps this week he can put it all together and climb up the leaderboards if a few more putts go down early. A great GPP play with Top 3 upside.
Viktor Hovland (DK $9,100) – A few days after a broken putter self-sabotaged his final round and tanked a lot of the WinDaily readership’s lineups, we should probably go right back to the ell with Hovland, who’s a T2G monster and normally seems pretty even-keeled on the golf course. With no real course history to look at, he doesn’t lose any advantage that more experienced tour veterans players would normally have.
Scottie Scheffler (DK $8,900) – Scheffler seems almost mispriced considering his upside and the way he checks all the boxes this week at Caves Valley. He’s sixth overall on my model and will be in all my single-entry GPP builds and up to 40 or 50 percent of my lineups. I love his chances to get a win here. Go get some exposure to the tall 25-year-old shining star with the great T2G game.
Corey Conners (DK $8,600) – The Canadian ball-striking sensation checks in at 15thoverall in my rankings, his putting woes and weak Driving Distance rankings the only things holding him back from the top 10. I’ll be a little more careful with him this week, maybe limiting my GPP ownership and using him in some crafty cash builds.
Sam Burns (DK $8,300) – Last week we didn’t seen Burns on too many ”top picks” lists, and while he didn’t do enough to help take down the large-field GPPs, he was T11 after three rounds at Liberty National and I love him again for that type of tournament this week. The T2G numbers aren’t excellent, but he’s got a bit of the Cameron Smith ability to bang it out there and clean things up by capitalizing on Par 5s and making a few more birdies than everybody else. He and Smith are actually right next to each other at Nos. 28 and 29 in my mixed model.
Paul Casey (DK $8,200) – Casey seems like the cash game play to Burns’ GPP analog, but I like him everywhere this week in a no-cut event at this discount price. The nicest guy on tour has the chops to live in the elite tier with the big boys in just about any tournament, and his proximity on approaches 200+ yards is one stat I really like.
Sungjae Im (DK $8,000) – I’m including Im here based on the detailed Breakdown that Sia, Joel and Spencer gave us this week – one of the things that got me interested in Finau last week. Im showed up 25th I my mixed model and while he has some momentum after a scrappy top 20, I was kind of on the fence until they touted him. The price is excellent and the upside is there on this golf course, where his T2G skills are at a premium.
Shane Lowry (DK $7,900) – Still a great price on Lowry! We talked about his top 5 upside last week and he was right there until a less-than-stellar back nine. The Irishman ranked sixth in SG: T2G for the week at Liberty National and should be priced well over $8K. Take advantage of that disrespect by rostering him in 25-30% (or more) of your lineups.
Keegan Bradley (DK $7,700) – He cracked the PGA Tour’s BMW Top 20 Power Rankings this week, which always provides a nice little glimpse of what could be some the chalkier PGA DFS plays for the week, but Sia really likes him and I’m intrigued by his excellent ball-striking and ability to hit good drives that aren’t that far back from the big boys.
Also consider: Rory McIlroy, Daniel Berger, Abraham Ancer, Webb Simpson Joaquin Niemann, Jason Kokrak (GPP)
Cameron Tringale (DK $7,500) – Spencer likes Tringale this week and while I have harder time getting him right, it’s a fine time to go back to the well considering the veteran’s solid play over the past 36 rounds. I don’t love him most weeks, but he’s been consistent over the past four events (T14-T-26-T16 and T21 last week at Liberty National) and he can go really low some days.
Cameron Champ (DK $7,300) – Champ’s game has been rounding into better form and he’s exorcised some of the putting and short-game demons that plague his power-forward game. He’s gotten it done since a T11 at the John Deere Classic and his win at the 3M Open, which he capped with a bogey-free final round 66. Steer clear in cash games, but get some exposure in GPPs.
Jhonattan Vegas (DK $7,100) – Vegas is my favorite play in the low-$7K range because of his distance, OTT numbers and T2G metrics. In fact, he’s No. 13 in my model and the only $7K player in my top 15. I’ll be using him in my single-entry builds and a lot of GPPs. Sure, he might get chalky if we’re all sticking to our models and playing the optimals, but this is a truly great spot for him, especially with no cut and guaranteed four cracks at this gettable golf course.
Maverick McNealy (DK $7,000) – We said last week that he really likes long golf courses and he ended up as both Sia’s Secret Weapon (SW) and my Bargain Blowout Baby (BBB), two low-ownership special Discord-exclusive perks that we divulge on Wednesday night for our premium subscribers. The T2G numbers are there and I think he’ll benefit from the smooth, fast Bentgrass greens this week as well.
Cameron Davis (DK $6,900) – Davis is only No. 32 in my mixed model, but I like the fact that he can plop one into the water, hit a rock and ricochet off a few things in the grandstands before landing 10 feet from the hole for an eventual eagle. Seriously – I like him in a no-cut event where he’ll have some leeway to spray it a bit and get back to the business of making birdies, where he’s eight in the field in BoB Gained.
Stewart Cink (DK $6,600) – Cink might end up being my BBB if his ownership is low enough, because no-cut events make it almost impossible to find non-chalky value under $7K and less than 5% ownership. So maybe no BBB this week, but I’ll have shares of Cink for his length off the tee and “veteran tour grinder” makeup. But he’ll be well under 10% for my overall exposure.
More value golfers to consider: Harold Varner, Charley Hoffman (GPP), Branden Grace, Marc Leishman (GPP), Sebastian Munoz (GPP), Carlos Ortiz (GPP)
Keith Mitchell (DK $6,500) – We can load up on long hitters like Mitchell a bit more this week, but I suspect he’ll be popular after his epically clutch finish at Liberty National to make the top 70. Plenty to like about his game heading into a venue that requires length OTT.
Ryan Palmer (DK $6,400) – Palmer is long enough, and he could fly under-the-radar this week, so I’ll be getting 10-15% exposure in my large-field GPPs. Perfect last piece for medium stars-and-scrubs builds. Maybe this is the week he surprises and sneaks into the top 15.
Patton Kizzire (DK $6,200) – Kizzire is a little riskier but benefits from the no-cut format and the perks of DK scoring, where birdies and eagles (and streaks) are king. I worry about his ability to find fairways and greens, but there’s upside in his power-and-putting game.
Hudson Swafford (DK $6,000) – The super-risky Swafford only makes sense as a last piece on extreme stars-and-scrubs, but the DK scoring rules and guaranteed four rounds are his friend this week. We know he’s a dynamic player who can get really hot, go low and win tournaments when they are ripe for scoring.
Additional GPP punts: Emiliano Grillo, Aaron Wise, Talor Gooch, Tom Hoge
In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the PGA Tour’s Northern Trust helping you find some winning teams in GPPs!
Jon Rahm (DK $11,500) – The No. 1 player in the world hasn’t played much lately since he was forced to withdraw from the Olympics after another positive COVID test. But his win at the U.S. Open and T3 at Royal St. George’s are proof positive he’s the frontrunner in the playoffs, and his complete T2G game and masterful short game combine to check all the boxes here. With pricing up, I like him best for GPP, but if you can find a cash lineup with him that you like, I wouldn’t blow it up.
Dustin Johnson (DK $11,000) – According to the PGA Tour stats, DJ was 23.53 total strokes better than the field average last year at TPC Boston when he ran away with the Northern Trust at -30. It was the third time he had gained 20 or more strokes en route to victory, and the change of venue shouldn’t hurt his game. He’s eighth in this field at Proximity from approaches 200+ yards over his last 36 rounds, he putts better on Bentgrass, and he makes for a great GPP play this week.
Jordan Spieth (DK $10,800) – Only a handful of players have been better at the 450-500 yard Par 4s over the past 36 rounds (solid GPP options Collin Morikawa and Rory McIlroy are a couple of them), and none of them can putt like Spieth can. Normally I wouldn’t look Spieth’s way for a cash game build in a field this good, but Sia really sung his praises in the excellent WinDaily Breakdown video, and Jordan has had such a great 2021 that I think I’m using him in cash and single entry as well as GPP.
Justin Thomas (DK $9,800) – JT hasn’t put it all together in a while (his last win was at the Players and he had lackluster finishes in the most recent majors) but he’s shown an affinity for playoff golf in the past and he’s tops in the field in SG: T2G over his last 24 rounds on courses over 7,400 yards in length. He was T12 here in 2019 and this is a good spot to jump back on the JT wagon in GPPs.
Also consider: Collin Morikawa, Rory McIlroy (GPP), Bryson DeChambeau (Cash), Viktor Hovland
Abraham Ancer (DK $9,400) – The freshly minted PGA Tour winner (WGC-FedEx St. Jude) was runner-up of this event at Liberty National in 2019, and he’s got to be brimming with confidence after the huge breakthrough in Memphis at TPC Southwind. Ancer is fourth overall in my mixed model and I’ll have exposure in my GPPs despite the inflated price this week.
Scottie Scheffler (DK $9,300) – Scheffler could be described as a decent putter, and that’s probably the weakest part of his game these days. He’s posted top 15 finishes in six of his last eight events and he thrives on long golf courses like this. There’s a bunch of golfers to like in this price range, but Scottie could be the sneakiest once again.
Patrick Cantlay (DK $9,200) – While I have an aversion to Cantlay in PGS DFS and he had a really rough stretch earlier this year, there’s no denying that he’s played much better golf since the PGA Championship, when he finished T23 and won in his next start at the Memorial. He prefers these A-24 Bentgrass greens, is third on tour in SG: T2G in 2021 and he finished T12 here in 2019.
Harris English (DK $8,800) – English has been stellar over the past three months, winning the Travelers at TPC River Highlands, finishing solo third at the U.S. Open, and posting top 15s in five of his last seven tournaments. He’s coming off a solo fourth at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude and I can’t find a reason to dislike him at Liberty National, even if he ends up at a really popular play.
Patrick Reed (DK $8,600) – Reed won here in 2019, and in true Captain America form went 3-1-1 when the Presidents Cup was played at this venue in 2017. He missed the cut at the Open Championship and has had some trouble keeping the ball in the fairway lately, but he’s a brilliant playoff competitor and a great GPP pivot from the more popular players in this price range.
Adam Scott (DK $8,400) – Scott missed an easy birdie putt and lost in that epic six-man playoff a week ago after firing a five-under 65 in the final round of the Wyndham Championship, but his ascent up the FedEx cup standings was impressive enough for lots of golf writers to pick him to win this week. He has course history behind him, with a fifth-place finish in 2019 and a win in 2013.
Tony Finau (DK $8,200) – I’ve been burned many times by Finau but I’m adding him to my player pool based on Joel Schreck and Spencer Aguiar’s recommendation in the Breakdown. A closer look at his numbers shows he’s good at avoiding three-putts and his SG ARG numbers have improved. He’s not much of a threat to win, but he could be that value guy who finishes top 10 and helps you secure a GPP win.
Sam Burns (DK $8,000) – I haven’t seen Burns on too many ”top picks” lists this week, but he’s showing up in my mixed model and he’s coming off a blistering 64 in the final round at TPC Southwind that got him int a playoff with Ancer. He’s awesome off the tee, can get really hot with the putter, and the fact that nobody’s talking about him make me love him for large-field GPPs.
Tyrrell Hatton (DK $7.800) – Hatton will be a lot chalkier than Burns, but the price is way too low for what he gives you on courses this length. He’s sprinkled in some bad performances with a few top 20s, and he’s No. 17 on my mixed model, in large part due to how well he handles the 200+ approaches and A-4 Bentgrass. He’s a solid option in all formats.
Jason Kokrak (DK $7,700) – I had lots of Kokrak last week when he missed the cut at the Wyndham Championship, but there wasn’t anything on the line then and I’m going back to the well this week with some exposure in GPPs. I don’t want to be one week off and have no shares, but I’m not going overboard.
Also consider: Daniel Berger (Cash), Webb Simpson, Paul Casey (GPP), Joaquin Niemann, Sungjae Im, Brian Harman, Ian Poulter, Russell Henley
Shane Lowry (DK $7,500) – What a great price on Lowry! The 2019 Open champ is 20th overall in my mixed model and checks most if not all of the boxes in our focus stat categories this week. The form is good, he’s solid on all types of golf courses, and he’s got top 5 upside.
Cameron Tringale (DK $7,300) – I’ve been overconfident with Tringale a few times in PGA DFS, but I really like mixing in a few shares of him this week in GPPs based on where he finishes in my mixed model (ninth overall) and his solid numbers on longer approaches.
Seamus Power (DK $7,000) – Power will likely garner some ownership at this price, so if you’re getting skittish you can pivot elsewhere in GPPs – you can follow Sia’s lead and work in a guy like Charley Hoffman. But Power has been playing much better golf lately and works as a low-cost option.
Maverick McNealy (DK $6,900) – He really likes long golf coursesand was one of the first names I noticed under $7K with good SG: T2G numbers in his last 14 rounds. His SG: APP numbers leave a bit to be desired, but he’s really good off the tee and he can make some long putts.
Charl Schwartzel (DK $6,900) – Schwartzel fares well in my model (No. 33 overall) and seems to step up his game in stiffer competition. He also overperforms on long courses and should fare well at Liberty National, as the overall layout seems to favor his game.
C.T. Pan (DK $6,600) – I’ve seen some folks throw out Aaron Wise as another golfer with this price to consider, but if I’m leaning contrarian here, I’d do it with a Bronze medalist who’s coming off four rounds in the 60s. Pan is a sneaky contrarian play on longer courses and I like his chances to make the cut and spike a Top 25.
More value golfers to consider: Kevin Streelman, Bubba Watson (GPP), Jason Day (GPP), Max Homa, Charley Hoffman (GPP), Carlos Ortiz (GPP), Talor Gooch, Brendan Todd, Chris Kirk, Pat Perez, Erik van Rooyen (GPP), Aaron Wise (GPP)
Matt Wallace (DK $6,500) – He checks a few important boxes this week (450-500 yard Par 4s and overall performance on long courses) and he’s solid around the greens and in wind. Wallace almost cracks the Top 20 in my mixed model this week so I’ll be mixing him into two or three GPPS in my 20 max builds.
Luke List (DK $6,400) – I’m always drawn to List when he’s cheap, but he’s strictly GPP only because he can implode on the greens. He’s scary to roster, so keep your ownership reasonably low (under 10%).
Hank Lebioda (DK $6,300) – Sia’s boy Hammerin’ Hank has a decent overall game and is a good ball striker. He offers plenty of value and should be a staple of stars-and-scrubs builds.
Additional GPP punts: K.H. Lee, Dylan Frittelli, Chez Reavie, Matt Kuchar, Doug Ghim, Harry Higgs
This week’s PGA DFS picks article should help you find some winning combinations and focus your player pool for the Open Championship at Royal St. George’s.
Jon Rahm (DK $11,300) – Despite the lack of a top 10 finish at the Open Championship (his best finish was a T11 at Royal Troon in 2016), Rahm enters the week as the betting favorite and highest priced PGA DFS golfer in the field. There’s no real weakness to his game; he currently leads the PGA TOUR in adjusted scoring – and ranks second in SG: T2G. His ball-striking has been on point this season, he loves links courses and he’s in play for all formats this week.
Rory McIlroy (DK $10,900) – I refuse to give up on Rory and think he’s a good GPP play this week in the wake of the missed cut at the Scottish Open – which he jumped into a little late because his wife and child are still stateside. He may end up being the lowest-owned golfer in the $10K+ range and that’s what we’re looking for since his upside is still in the trophy-hoisting territory. “Rors” is both familiar with this giant-killer venue (T25 here in 2011) and the elements that could stymie a large portion of the PGA DFS field.
Brooks Koepka ($10,700) – Because of his impressive history in majors (four wins in the past five years) and the Open Championship (three top 10s since 2015), Koepka isn’t cheap, but he’s a fine GPP play. The polarizing figure was a 13-year-old spectator in 2003 when Ben Curtis won at Royal St. George’s, and while he said Tuesday morning (in an interview that had the NYT writing about it) that while this isn’t his favorite British Open venue in the venerable rotation, there’s no reason to leave him off your builds with his uncanny ability to compete in the world’s biggest tournaments.
Jordan Spieth (DK $9,700) – The former Open champion (2017 at Royal Birkdale) is impressive on links courses and has the requisite elements to his game is solid form heading into this week’s test. We have plenty of options in the $7,000-7,500 range this week if we’re rostering Rahm-Spieth to start, and if we’re fading Rahm there’s a great route to balanced builds that start with Spieth as the highest spend ($8K+ remining per golfer). I’ll be hoping to land around 25-40% ownership in GPPs.
Also consider: Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas (GPP)
Louis Oosthuizen (DK $9,300) – There’s not much more to say about the former Open champion than what Sia said in his U.S. Open Initial picks piece and what I covered in the picks column leading into Torrey Pines, when he finished solo second after being edged out by Rahm. He’s not playing in the Olympics, so this tournament has to be an important one for him as he continues playing solid golf in the late summer/early autumn of his fantastic career. He’s a guy I love in basically all the majors for PGA DFS, but I know he’ll be popular this week.
Viktor Hovland (DK $9,100) – Hovland – the No. 14 golfer in the world – became the first Norwegian winner in the history of the European tour when he prevailed at the BMW International Open in Germany a couple weeks ago, and his steady play and positive attitude should help him navigate the inexorable bounces and bumps of Royal St. George’s. The only drawback is his last of experience, as this will be his Open Championship debut, and it’s one of those things that’s got Sia concerned, as he explains in the breakdown.
Patrick Reed ($8,800) – While I’m a little skeptical that Reed can endure the elements and win the Open Championship, he’s certainly in play at this low price because of his ability to finish in the top 15. The form isn’t great, and his accuracy could be a problem here, but the ironically nicknamed “Captain America” loves to play the villain and he’s a shrewd large-field GPP play with an elite short game.
Paul Casey (DK $8,600) – Casey disappointed with a T54 at this venue in 2011 (a third-round 78 the main culprit), and his Open Championship finishes have left a bit to be desired through the years. But he’s a much more consistent golfer these days and has six top 10 finishes in his last 10 tournaments, so I like his chances for a top 10 this week, especially at this relatively fair price.
Tony Finau (DK $8,400) – I’ve said “never again” after being burned by Terrible Tony many times, but the talent level is off the charts and the price is a reasonable one despite two straight MCs at the U.S. Open and Travelers. Finau has not missed a cut at the Open Championship in four tries, and three of those attempts have yielded Top 20 finishes (solo third in 2019, T9 in 2018, T18 in 2016). He probably circled this on the schedule the minute he trudged off the 18th green at Torrey Pines, and I will be surprised (and angry) if he sabotages my GPP lineups again this week.
Matt Fitzpatrick (DK $7,900) – As you may have noticed if you’re a regular reader of PGA DFS Picks, Fitzpatrick is one of my favorite golfers to roster in single-entry and all types of GPPs, and I’ll continue that approach this week at Royal St. George’s – a venue where he should thrive – despite the disappointment of coming off a playoff loss to Min Woo Lee at the Scottish Open. His best finish in the Open Championship was the most recent iteration in 2019 (T20), and I believe he’s ready to break through with a top 10 (or better) this time around – when distance is not as important (it’s even shorter than it was in 2011) and he can plot his way around the golf course. In fact, Fitzpatrick came here last year (after having been told that he wasn’t going to enjoy it because of the blind shots and uneven lies) shot 67 and loved the course.
Shane Lowry (DK $7,900) – The defending champion is under $8K this week, and that alone puts him in play in all formats, even if he’s exceedingly popular. Lowry performs well in weather and wind, and he was the only player who didn’t collapse in the gale-force gusts that plagued the final round at Royal Portrush Golf Club in 2019. There’s plenty of PGA DFS upside in this price range, and both Fitzpatrick and Lowry make for fine core plays in all kinds of builds.
Sergio Garcia (DK $7,600) – His last Top 5 at a British Open came in 2016, but he finished T9 here in 2011. He’s far from a safe play and I wouldn’t touch him in cash games despite the low price, but he’s a great GPP option given his upside and the dynamic quality of game and ball-striking prowess. He’s had a hard time closing things out this season, with some good rounds giving way to PGA DFS tumbles over the weekend, but he’s in play at this venue in large-field GPPs.
Also consider: Collin Morikawa (GPP), Tyrrell Hatton, Patrick Cantlay, Webb Simpson, Scottie Scheffler (GPP), Jason Day, Joaquin Niemann, Abraham Ancer
Francesco Molinari (DK $7,300) – The talented Italian won the Open Championship in 2018 and finished T11 in 2019 – impressive finishes that show he can handle links style courses with the best of them. He missed the cut at Royal St. George’s in 2011, but a decade of additional experience in major championships should help him this week.
Harris English (DK $7,300) – English has piled up the top 10 finishes this season (seven), and he’s one of just five golfers to notch two wins on tour this season. In the focus stats/metrics, he checks some crucial boxes for Royal St. George’s, ranking eighth in SG:T2G and seventh in Bogey Avoidance over his past three tournaments. He’s also missed the weekend just once in five Open appearances and has made cuts in 13 consecutive majors – something that makes him a solid play for single-entry and cash games as well as large-field GPPs.
Rickie Fowler (DK $7,300) – Fowler is teeing it up in his 11th Open Championship, with only one MC at this event (and three finishes of T6 or better – including a T2 from 2014 and a T5 at Royal St. George’s in 2011. That level of experience is a big help, and he’s finally rounding into form after a rough stretch in late 2020/early 2021. The fan favorite has now secured a weekend pass in three of his last four starts (T8, T11, MC and T32) and the impressive T8 was at the year’s second major – the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island.
Robert MacIntyre (DK $7,300) – MacIntyre is right there with the rest of the high-upside players at this price point, even if PGA Tour golf fans aren’t that familiar with his record. Bobby Mac impressed at the Royal Portrush in 2019 at his Open Championship (and major tournament) debut, concluding in difficult conditions with a final round 68 and eventual T6 finish. He’s now ranked No. 53 in the world, making the cut at five straight majors – a T12 at the Masters this April his best major finish since the 2019 Open. MacIntyre shot under par in all four rounds last week and posted a T18 at the Renaissance Club in the Scottish Open – a links with at least a passing resemblance to Royal St. George’s. Excluding a COVID-related withdrawal at the Irish Open recently, The Scotsman has made a remarkable 25 of his last 26 cuts worldwide and may even be viable in cash games this week.
Branden Grace (DK $7,200) – Grace is usually hit-or-miss in major championships, but he arrives sporting some good form due to some sparkling iron play over his last dozen or so rounds. He has a history of going low at the Open, dating back to his 62 in Round three Saturday at Royal Birkdale in 2017 – when he finished T6 with Koepka, Marc Leishman, Alex Noren and Matthew Southgate at -4. The 33-year-old South African also finished inside the top 20 at the Open Championship in 2015, and arrives at this week’s edition on the heels of two consecutive top seven finishes on the PGA Tour, including a T7 at the 2021 U.S. Open.
Ian Poulter (DK $7,200) – Since missing the cut at Royal St. George’s in 2011 (which surely sticks in his craw), Poulter has a spotty history at the Open Championship with five MCs and three top 15s – a testament to his dynamic play and viability as a GPP play. His 2021 record is actually a lot more steady: Since the PGA Championship, he’s 6-for-6 with two top five finishes including T4 at the Scottish open this past week.
Alex Noren (DK $7,200) – Noren has a distinguished record at the Open Championship, finishing T11 with Rahm, JT, Molinari and Tom Lewis in 2019 and earning top 10s in 2017 and 2012. He’s also finished among the top 15 (including a T4 at the Rocket Mortgage Classic) in two of the past three starts, sporting excellent T2G numbers in that stretch. I wouldn’t pencil him into all my single-entry lineups, but I’m willing to take as stab in the lower-fee SE and in all types of large-field GPPs.
Matt Kuchar (DK $7,000) – Kuchar is my choice for sneaky veteran bargain play – especially on a course that’s not all about mashing and/or the traditional “target” golf that’s played on a lot of the modern stateside venues. He’s fared well at the open Championship in the past and finished solo second at Royal Birkdale in 2017. In fact, he’s made nine out of his last 10 cuts in this tournament (and eight straight), the only outlier being the 2011 edition at – you guessed it – Royal St. George’s. The revenge narrative is strong this week and Kuchar should be low-owned with Top 10 upside.
Lucas Herbert (DK $6,800) – The woefully mispriced Herbert won at the Irish Open two weeks ago and notched a T4 in Scotland last week, so he’s in fine form heading into the Open. The plucky Australian also finished inside the top 20 at a couple of relatively prestigious PGA Tour events – the Memorial and the Travelers. He’s now won a couple times in his past 23 starts worldwide and should offer plenty of value as you construct your builds this week.
Lucas Glover (DK $6,600) – Hey – it’s another cheap Lucas! Glover is coming off a huge win at the John Deere Classic, snapping a winning drought that lasted over 10 years, and he should be excited about playing a course where he posted his best-ever finish at the Open Championship – a T12 in 2011. Winning two weeks in a row and collecting just his second major championship is a tall order – no doubt – but he’s a risk-reward play that won’t cost you very much to roster.
More value golfers to consider: Phil Mickelson (GPP), Lee Westwood, Daniel Berger (GPP), Thomas Detry, Matt Wallace, Russell Henley (GPP), Min Woo Lee, Corey Conners (GPP), Danny Willett, Erik van Rooyen (GPP), Kevin Kisner, Stewart Cink, Richard Bland, Adam Long (GPP)
Justin Harding (DK $6,500) – More of a single day (first-round?) showdown longshot, Justin Harding heads into the 2021 The Open Championship at Royal St. George’s Golf Club with insanely long (+35000) odds to win, but he’s in play due to the fact that he made the cut and finished 41st in his last appearance at this event in 2019, and he’s super cheap. I’m targeting him for 1/20 GPP entries.
Chris Kirk (DK $6,400) – Kirk made three of his last five cuts, but he’s 17-for-23 this season – decent for a golfer under $6,500. While he missed the cut during his last British Open appearance in 2016, he’s a much better golfer now and should be up to the challenge personally and professionally. Like Harding, I’ll find a place for him in 1/20 large-field GPP entries.
Johannes Veerman (DK $6,100) – Veerman posted a T3 at the Irish Open two weeks ago and is coming off a T8 at the Scottish Open, so the form is solid. He’s seemingly a fans of links-style courses and while he’s a virtual unknown who could boom or bust this week, the price is dirt cheap and he’s one of the better low-cost options in the $6K range – which we’ll need to peruse if we’re going full-on stars and scrubs. He might be my favorite play under $6,600, so I’m willing to click him into 5-10% of my large-field GPPs (and one or two of my 20-max entries).
Additional GPP punts: Sebastian Munoz, Carlos Ortiz, Marcus Armitage, Jason Scrivener, Sam Burns, Chan Kim
The next event for PGA DFS takes us to “Hogan’s Alley” for the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial Country Club – where we’re giving you the winning picks!
Jordan Spieth (DK $11,200) – A Texas kid born in the Dallas-Fort Worth golf mecca, Spieth is a former winner here (2016), has never missed a cut at Colonial, and has a host of Top 10s, even in recent years when his game has struggled to find some consistency. With his putter always in form and his ball-striking ranking much better in 2021, Spieth can’t be avoided when discussing the favorites this week.
Justin Thomas (DK $10,300) – JT makes for a great GPP play after a missed cut at the PGA Championship, but he’s still a bit risky given his spotty play recently. PGA DFS can be very frustrating when you’re on a guy (and an expensive guy to boot) and he breaks your heart by missing out on the weekend points and killing your lineup. But there’s nothing worse than fading that same guy the next week and watching him win. For that reason, it’s important to run it back one in a while and I’ll be doing that with JT at Colonial.
Collin Morikawa (DK $10,500) – Morikawa checks all the boxes this week except the putting stats, but the greens are small enough that if he’s doing his thing with his irons he should be close enough to make some putts. One of the best ball strikers in the world, Morikawa hits a smooth fade, doesn’t need length off the tee to win here and that’s a huge plus in giving him the nod over the others in this elite range. Sia, Joel and Nick are all on board, so I feel comfortable using him in my single-entry lineup and GPP core.
Abraham Ancer (DK $9,700) – Ancer has three consecutive Top 10s and while he will be chalky as hell, he’s hard for me to get away from in my builds. I’ll be using him in all formats, and he’ll be a core play for me in stars and scrubs lineups as well. If his putter goes cold he could have problems justifying this price, but he’s been so good with his irons he’s almost always in play.
Also consider: Patrick Reed, Will Zalatoris, Scottie Scheffler (GPP)
Corey Conners (DK $9,400) – It may still be wise to steer clear of Conners in GPPs until we see more Top 10 finishes, but he’s a cutmaker who’s 3-for-3 at Colonial and had a T8 in his 2018 debut at this venue. Again – Conners is mostly a cash game play with projected ownership creeping up.
Sungjae Im (DK $9,100) – Im missed the cut here in his 2019 Charles Schwab debut but improved to a T10 (with Spieth and Thomas) in 2020. We know he doesn’t tire easily, so the four grueling rounds he played steadily last week (70-72-73-73) don’t get me off him. The price is fine, and he won’t see massively high ownership.
Justin Rose (DK $8,900) –Maybe Rose will be inspired by Phil’s epic win at Kiawah Island last week, and we know the former winner at Colonial can play elite golf when he’s striking it well. Rose makes for a sneaky GPP play in a week where he won’t be highly owned.
Ryan Palmer (DK $8,600) –Palmer missed the cut last week andhas a vested interest in playing well at his home course. He loves the place, knows the greens really well, wants desperately to win at the venue commonly known as “Hogan’s Alley” and should stand out as a solid GPP play with his history of mixing MCs with Top 10s here.
Cameron Tringale (DK $8,100) – Let’s start with the bad. During round 2 last week, Tringale was -1 when he stepped on the No. 14 tee (he started on the back) and was +11 just four holes later. Then a little alligator walked across the fairway in front of him. That horrific stretch aside, Tringale played well and has the chops to rebound with a soldi finish this week.
Brian Harman (DK $8,000) – Harman looks like more of a cash game play this week, as he’s projected to be very popular (>25%). I won’t be using him too much more than 10-15% in my 20 max builds, but there’s a case to be made for using him and his five straight made cuts at Colonial.
Brandt Snedeker (DK $7,900) – Mr. Pop Stroke is one of the craftiest putters on tour, and the relatively poor ball striking and lack of length off the tee shouldn’t hurt him too much here. Sneds is super risky and shouldn’t be used in cash games but makes sense for large-field GPPs.
Chris Kirk (DK $7,600) – He’s missed two straight cuts, but people haven’t forgotten how good of a golfer he’s been in 2021, because he’s very popular again. I’ll throw out his performance last week because of the course difficulty, and trust he got an early start on getting his T2G and putting under control heading into an event where he’s had two Top 15s in his last four tries.
Also consider: Joaquin Niemann, Gary Woodland (GPP), Jason Kokrak (GPP), Charley Hoffman (Cash), Kevin Na (GPP), Kevin Streelman, Emiliano Grillo (GPP)
Peter Uihlein (DK $7,500) – I’m not super excited about the $7-8K price range this week, and the fact that Uihlein is popping so much for his form could mean he breaks my heart this week. I don’t normally play him, but it’s his fourth appearance here and he has top 15s in his last two tries and is playing some of the best golf right now.
Patton Kizzire (DK $7,400) – He’s an awesome putter and his best finishes and have come in Texas. I’m not super excited about him this week because if he’s missing fairways there could be problems, but I think he can hit less-than-driver and be long enough to be in fine shape to contend. Not a cash game play, but usable in GPPs.
Harold Varner III (DK $7,400) – Another GPP extraordinaire who mixes missed cuts with solid finishes, Varner had a T2 at the RBC Heritage and T49 last week. He also finished T19 at the Honda Classic, which is similar in the focus stats that tend to drive success here.
Russell Knox, (DK $7,300) – Sia loves him for first-round leader, and it’s very tempting to consider him for single-entry this week given the price point and solid performances over his last three events (T21-T18-T39), He finished T8 here in 2019 but we can throw out the MC in 2020 amid the uncertainty of golf’s fanless return at the time.
J.T. Poston (DK $6,900) – I liked him heading into last week but the course and some bad timing on Friday 78 got the better of him. This week, he’s cheap and playing a venue where he’s 3-for-4 with a T10 last year and a T20 in 2018. GPP only.
Maverick McNealy (DK $6,900) – I use McNealy in GPPs once in a while and this seems like a good spot to go back to him. He’s 2-for-2 and while he’s a feast-or-famine type of golfer (he’s mixed in a solo second, a T4 and a T49 among six missed cuts in his last nine tournaments), this course seems to suit his strengths.
Patrick Rodgers (DK $6,700) – I wish Rodgers could put together four good rounds, because he’s got Top 25 upside. A third round 79 killed his chances at the Well Fargo, but he’s made his last two cuts after a poor April stretch. Worth a look in GPPs.
More value golfers to consider: Cameron Davis, Joel Dahmen, Talor Gooch, Doc Redman (GPP), C.T. Pan (GPP), Rory Sabbatini, Henrik Stenson, Mackenzie Hughes, Andrew Putnam
Adam Long (DK $6,200) – I’ll only be using these guys in large-field GPP lineups that focus on stars and scrubs. If you’re trying to cram some combo of Spieth and/or JT with Morikawa/Ancer/Zalatoris in your first three spots, you’re forced to use the next three on guys like Long, who finished T19 here in 2019 and could post another Top 20.
Brian Gay (DK $6,100) – Gay has a T13 and T34 two of his last three appearances at Colonial, and I’m sure he was one of the first golfers my buddy Spades inserted into his lineup this week. The veteran golfer loves small greens (just like C.T. Pan does) and he’s in play as a longshot with Top 25 upside.
Mark Hubbard (DK $6,100) – Hubbard’s name also draws my attention because he an get rally hot with the putter, which is one of the things that could help guys break through this week. He’s much better for single-day lineups but I’m fine using him in 5% of GPPs hoping for a made cut and hot streak with that flat stick.
Additional GPP punts: Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Anirban Lahiri
We’re once again bringing you some PGA DFS picks and analysis, looking for some winning teams at The Wells Fargo Championship at classic Quail Hollow!
Justin Thomas (DK $11,500) – JT is the most expensive golfer this week as he returns to Quail Hollow and the site of his 2017 PGA Championship win. The conditions won’t be quite as tough now as they were then, but Thomas should be able to contend if he can get even a little hot with the putter. Most of his recent “struggles” can be tied directly to a lot of really good putts that just didn’t fall in – a result that should progress toward better SG: P numbers this week.
Bryson DeChambeau (DK $11,200) – Playing Bryson in DFS sometimes feels like mashing the “X” button for the power boost in the Tiger Woods video games, but if there was a week to take advantage of his obscene length, this is it. He’s No. 1 overall on my mixed model ranking and one of the course comps is Winged Foot, where he won the U.S. Open in 2020. He’s a bomb-and-gouge guy on a course that welcomes it and the Par 5 scoring (he’s tops in the field) has to be good. Giddyup!
Jon Rahm (DK $10,800) – Rory shows up ahead of JT at the No. 2 overall spot o my model, but Rahm seems a great fit for this golf course, even though he’s only played here in the 2017 PGA Championship to a unexceptional finish (made cut but ended up T58). Still – Rahm’s great off the tee and he avoids bogeys – key metrics this week that make him a fine play in all formats despite his projected popularity.
Also consider: Rory McIlroy (GPP), Viktor Hovland (Cash), Patrick Cantlay (GPP), Tony Finau
Will Zalatoris (DK $9,400) – I don’t know if there’s a really a time when it’s safe to jump off the Zalatoris train, even with his T42 finish at the RBC Heritage on a small-greens course that didn’t play to his strengths of power and precision. He’s a prolific cut-maker and a generational type of talent who drives the ball fairly well, so he makes sense as a GPP pivot from guys like Finau and Conners.
Joaquin Niemann (DK $9,100) – Normally, I let the field get excited about Niemann and fade the guy, but his consistent play recently has me getting a lot more exposure. He doesn’t excel in any one of our focus stats categories this week, but he’s solid enough across the board (22nd in SG: APP and 25th in SG: OTT on difficult scoring courses) to end up as my No. 12 golfer in the model.
Max Homa (DK $9,100) – As good as Homa has been the past few weeks, he’s going to be hard to fade on a course where he’s already won. There don’t seem to be any flaws in his game right now and he’s No. 4 in my overall model in an absolutely stacked field – the highest I’ve seen him in several weeks.
Sungjae Im (DK $8,800) – Im is finding his ball-striking groove and appears a lot more comfortable with the putter recently. He checks all the boxes this week in the key metrics and makes for an excellent GPP play that doesn’t offer too much risk and plenty of Top 15 upside.
Cameron Tringale (DK $8,400) – He’s the same price as last week but the field is tougher, so you’d think his ownership should drop – but he might still end up like 18-20% owned. He might be okay for cash games, but I’d rather spend the extra few hundred and take Im in GPPs, especially since Tringale hasn’t found much success here since 2016.
Emiliano Grillo (DK $8,100) – I’ll go back to the well with Grillo and take the $200 discount from last week. He’s proven he belongs on courses that emphasize tee-to-green numbers over putting (he has a T9 here in 2018), and the days of him performing only in poor fields are gone. Grillo is a risky play because he tends to three-putt a little more than we’d like, but I like him for some GPPs.
Lucas Glover (DK $7,800) – After a rough start to 2020, Glover enters the Wells Fargo playing solid golf and sporting a still-affordable price tag under $8K. He’s done well here over the years with five career top 10s, including a win here in 2011.
Joel Dahmen (DK $7,600) – Dahmen won the Corales Puntacana in March after three straight missed cuts (and six of seven with the lone made cut coming at the AT&T), and he finished second here in 2019, three strokes behind Homa. The “A game” can come and go pretty quickly with this guy, so he’s best used as a last piece in balanced GPP builds.
Also consider: Corey Conners (cash), Abraham Ancer (GPP), Brian Harman (Cash), Jason Day (GPP), Bubba Watson, Shane Lowry, Stewart Cink, Talor Gooch
Kyle Stanley (DK $7,100) – Last week we discussed his tee ball game, and this week that’s a huge focus stat for us. I’m not as in love with Matt Jones and Lanto Griffin this week as everyone else, but Stanley’s ownership should remain low enough in GPPs to make him a worthwhile addition to the player pool. A T8 here in 2019 and T13 in 2018 add more intrigue, though he missed the cut at the 2017 PGA Championship.
Ryan Moore (DK $7,100) – Moore graded out well last week and now he’s playing to even more of his strengths, with putting being his biggest bugaboo. He’s solid OTT and if he can get a few more birdies to drop, makes for a great value play. The $7,000 to $7,100 range has a bunch of guys I like, so I foresee a few not-quite scrubs-and-stars GPP builds where I roster four guys like Moore, Wise, Kizzire and Tom Hoge and then finish it off with a couple of $10K-11K guys. Moore got me excited with an opening 66 last week, but this week he won’t have to contend with as much wind and can spray it a bit more off the tee. I’m in.
Aaron Wise (DK $7,100) – Wise has compelling Top 10 upside this week on a course where he’s had lots of success in his young career (T2 in 2018 with Nick Watney; T18 in 2019). We can probably throw out the finish at the RBC Heritage and look at the balance of his recent play to see that he’s trending in the right direction. Nick mentioned on the breakdown video that he might end up around 10% ownership, but I’m fine using him in single-entry and the 20-max dip at around 20-25% to stay ahead of the field.
Patton Kizzire (DK $7,000) – I think I was one week off on Kizzire, who I always seem to have plenty of exposure to in GPPs on bomb-and-gouge courses. Last week I added him (not so confidently) to my player pool at the last minute before lock and his middle two rounds (75-76) destroyed any hope for a solid finish. This week, the layout should give him more of an advantage.
Phil Mickelson (DK $6,900) – He’s way too cheap (and still pretty long off the tee) for where he ends up in my mixed model rankings this week (No. 39 overall). A polarizing figure who still commands plenty of ownership among his fans, Phil is a dynamic player who makes it hard to go all in. If I can land on about 7.5-10% in GPPs and be slightly ahead of the field, I’ll be happy.
Luke List (DK $6,800) – Four missed cuts in his last six events will keep his ownership low, and I like the course fit for List at an event where he’s had a Top 10. If it clicks for him this week, he could be the only sub-$7K player in contention, so I’m fine staking my exposure at 10-15% ownership in GPPs.
Sam Ryder (DK $6,700) – Another golfer I like this week that could fly well under the radar, Ryder is popping on my models and makes for a high-risk play considering he’s missed his last two cuts. He’s probably the lowest priced golfer that I’ll consider at 10+ percent exposure in my GPPs.
More value golfers to consider: Lanto Griffin, Carlos Ortiz, Matt Jones (GPP), Sebastian Munoz, Erik van Rooyen (GPP), Charl Schwartzel, Tom Hoge (GPP), Adam Schenk, Wyndham Clark, Chez Reavie (GPP)
Patrick Rodgers (DK $6,500) – Rodgers isn’t the best in approach metrics, but he’s really solid off the tee, so he could be a decent litmus test for which category wins out this week. I liked him quite a bit when I started looking for longshots, and I do even more now that Stick’s Picks endorsed him, but he’s definitely GPP only.
Bronson Burgoon (DK $6,500) – I think Burgoon could be ready for a breakthrough at Quail Hollow despite the lack of success in the past. If you need a punt play who’s striking the ball well (T13 last week at the Valspar), he could be your guy.
Hank Lebioda (DK $6,300) – “Hammerin” Hank Lebioda also finished T13 at the Valspar, and Sia mentioned him in the breakdown as a possible punt play. At just $6,300 and coming off his best finish in 2021, he’s worth a look.
Additional GPP punts: Richy Werenski, Henrik Norlander, Cameron Percy, Joseph Bramlett, Will Gordon, Seung-Yul Noh
In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at The Valspar Championship and helping you find some winning teams!
Justin Thomas (DK $11,500) – JT is my top dog emcee this week, despite an embarrassing MC his last time out here at Copperhead in 2019. Feel free to drop him into your GPPs and hope for the A game on a course he should excel on — in a clime and locale he digs. Some tighter pricing at the very top will keep him lower owned than usual. He posted T10 in 2015 and T18 in 2016, but not tons of success here…yet. JT’s greatest strength in GPPs is both his predictability (on hard golf courses) and his relative unpredictability (when it comes to making cuts) in PGA DFS.
Dustin Johnson (DK $11,200) – He’ll come in even lower than JT, so why not? I’m going to try to jam both of these guys in together in just one or two of 20 max GPPs – it’s a tough stars-and-scrubs route but not impossible if you deploy 2-3 of my punts in the $6,300-$6,700 range. DJ’s almost twice that, but I’m still fine coming in around the field on his ownership because he’s so frickin’ solid T2G. Again — in most cases we’ll be tasked with rostering one or the other, so you’ll have to pick your poison in the Justin-or-Dustin sweepstakes.
Paul Casey (DK $10,000) – I guess he likes it here, huh? Casey’s the defending champ two times over, so you know damn well he’s going to be popular – like Hell’s Ice Cream Man. I’m using some recent course history in my mixed model this week; as a result he’s No. 1 in the field four categories (three exclusive to Copperhead: SG:T2G, SG: Short Game and DK Pts), and the other a very impressive field-beater for Par 4s (400-450). Casey also ranks out as No. 5 in my Good Drives Gained metric and No. 3 overall in two categories tweaked for difficult fairways and scoring: SG: APP and SG: T2G. So hard to bet against him, but he’s definitely looking at 15-20% ownership this week in GPPs.
Corey Conners (DK $9,600) – He might be more of a cash play than GPP, because he’s becoming popular – and he’ll be more popular than Casey, even – for a reason. But yeah, I’d use him in single-entry GPPs, especially if you’re fading Casey. Conners finished T16 here (right with the next two golfers I wrote up, in fact) in 2018, and it’s a very viable trio again in 2021, with all three of them in my model’s Top 15.
Louis Oosthuizen (DK $9,500) – So yeah, I love Louis and the high price – because it’s up with the big boys and he should fly under 12% owned in GPPs. Oosty has a T7 (2016), a T16 (2018) and a T2 (2019) at Copperhead and he’s swinging it great recently. The last tee shot he hit that folks watched got pushed it into the water – and he and teammate Charl Schwartzel lost in the first hole of a playoff at the Zurich Classic to Aussie bros and champs Marc Leishman and Cameron Smith. Not sure what effect that has, but I’m using King Louis of the Gorgeous Tempo in like 20-30% of my GPPs to get myself way ahead of the field.
Also consider: Scottie Scheffler (GPP), Patrick Reed (Cash)
Abraham Ancer (DK $9,300) – Ancer’s solid driving, elite iron play and pin-seeking approaches should help keep him on point at Copperhead, where he finished T16 in his only appearance in 2018. No 4 in my mixed model, No. 3 in Par 4s (400-450), No. 8 in Good Drives Gained and No. 17 in the field for Par 3s (200-250). Impressive numbers for this T2G maestro that help me see him as a top cash and SE GPP play this week.
Sungjae Im (DK $9,200) – Our guy Joel may be “on a Sungjae kick,” but I’m just getting started because I’ve avoided him a bit like Sia has. This week, he’s popping up as No. 2 on my mixed model, and he notched a T4 here at the Valspar in 2019. I’ll have a hard time leaving him out of my player pool even if he’s 20% owned. Im’s approach game and recently competitive play indicate he’s the type of guy to look for here in a breakthrough.
Russell Henley (DK $9,000) – He’ll be popular, and Sia discussed why a little before when Joel confessed he’s a Sungjae believer on the breakdown. Henley pops in a lot of models, even though he hasn’t played well here aside from a T9 in 2017. I may not be into him like Sia – but I’m a little more bullish than Joel on him because of his T2G and approach abilities on tough courses like this.
Justin Rose (DK $8,800) – Always a better driver and ball-striker than a putter, Rose has hit a resurgent stride under the tutelage of Sean Foley and looks to be recovered from his back woes and wayward shots. He was one of the first guys I wrote in to discuss, arrives in great form and finished T5 here in 2018. I’m jumping aboard and I still think folks are wary to do the same – so he’s fine for GPPs at under 10-12% ownership. Glad to hear Sia is into him too. Watching Rose play the last few weeks has been a pleasure after his rough patch.
Jason Kokrak (DK $8,700) – He’s shaping up to be popular, and I like him for cash with Conners or Ancer (or maybe both). Good recent course history (consecutive top tens) and great form (3/4 top tens) His average finish at the event is 19th, and he even carded one of the individual top single-day scores in 2019 when he finished T2 with Oosthuizen. It wouldn’t surprise me if Kokrak was in contention on Sunday, so he’s on my short list in this price range.
Cameron Tringale (DK $8,400) – I’ll be looking at ownership before I make a final determination on how deep I’ll plunge in GPPs, and I’m really the most focused on his SG:APP numbers more than anything, so that might end up meaning I’m fine being close to where the field lands. I don’t want to be double it and overexpose, and I don’t want to miss out on a guy I really like playing each week for his ball-striking.
Emiliano Grillo (DK $8,300) – Putting is less important than T2G numbers here, so Grillo makes for a perfect GPP play. I landed on a lot of the same names as Joel and Sia this week, so the overlap in our Venn diagram of player pools could work out great for WinDaily subscribers if they really zero in with our builds. My piece on Grillo is that he won’t be quite as popular as the early ownership projections, because folks will get cold feet when they look at his course history here.
Chris Kirk (DK $8,200) – I know his course history isn’t great, but he’s just a better golfer now and he’s No. 30 on my model, which includes a data set of some assorted SGs (and DK points) from Copperhead over the past five seasons. That part isn’t too appealing, but he’s tackling all the other focus stats recently in this stretch of wonderful form. I wrote the start of this blurb right before I heard Sia point out in the breakdown about how he’s playing the best golf of his life at the moment – and a great value.
Talor Gooch (DK $8,000) – His numbers at Copperhead are awful, but he’s bound to come around here the second time he plays it, right? He’s a tough longshot play at 75-1 to win, but I like his Top 15 upside this week based on his SG:APP numbers and his dominance of Par 3s 200-225. There’s five par 3s here! And he hits the golf ball very well! Seriously, though, I’m getting me some GPP shares of the Goochmeister.
Also consider: Joaquin Niemann, Charley Hoffman, Sam Burns, Keegan Bradley (GPP), Kevin Kisner, Lucas Glover, Adam Hadwin (GPP)
Lanto Griffin (DK $7,400) – It’s his debut at Copperhead, but Griffin is the type of talent who could get in the Top 12-15 here in his first run. He shakes out well on the mixed model (No. 16 overall) and I don’t think the lack of experience should hurt him too much. He’s almost $1K cheaper than Grillo and has similar upside as an under-the-radar PGA DFS value play.
Danny Willett (DK $7,200) –A really good play in GPPS this week, Willett arrives in very good form and the former Masters champion is a whiz on this type of difficult track – which demands good shots into the par 3s and plays to his T2G strengths. The Englishman is one of the more talented players in this range, alongside Stenson and Griffin, and he’s hitting it crisp and straight.
Charl Schwartzel (DK $7,100) – I think being in contention alongside Oosthuizen last week helped him out tremendously, and I think the good memories of his 2016 win here are more than just a narrative on a course this tough, especially when you factor in the solo sixth place in 2017. Charl makes for a viable value play in a good majority of formats this week, as he was T26 at the Masters (another place he won) and I think he’ll still come in under 8% ownership. I’ll be pleased as punch if I can lock him into 15-20% of my GPP lineups and get that far ahead of the field, for his top 20 upside alone.
Henrik Stenson (DK $7,000) – He’s tops in the field in SG: APP on Copperhead over the past five events, so I’m going to be grabbing some shares at this low price – especially considering the dynamic track record and his ability to play well on tough courses. His short game isn’t great, but that’s not a focus stat this week, and his swing coach has him playing much better than in 2020. Stenson makes sense for use in some GPPs.
Tom Hoge (DK $7,000) – He’s almost always firmly in play in PGA DFS as a high-risk, high-reward GPP play unless the greens are very difficult, but that’s not the issue here. He’s No. 34 in my mixed model this week and I’m still waiting for that Top 5-10 I know he’s capable of if he can avoid the one bad round that usually spoils his eventual finish.
Ryan Moore (DK $6,900) – Moore grades out in the Top 10 of my model, but we’ve acknowledged that I’m taking course history into account – especially when it comes to searching for sub-$7K plays. There’s plenty to like about the current state of his game and the venue just works great, as he’s fifth in SG: T2G and SG:APP among the field over the Valspar’s past five events at Copperhead.
Kyle Stanley (DK $6,800) – A good driver of the golf ball who’s pretty solid T2G, Stanley fits the course profile pretty well and should come in under 5% ownership, so he’s worth a look in GPPs. He’s far from masterful around the greens and on them, so SG: Short Game is my biggest concern when it comes to focus stats, but I can endorse up to 10% in 20 max GPPs and other large-field events.
More value golfers to consider: Denny McCarthy, Doug Ghim, Brandt Snedeker (GPP), Patton Kizzire (GPP), Rory Sabbatini (GPP), John Huh, Luke List, Chase Seiffert (GPP), Scott Stallings (GPP)
Ryan Armour (DK $6,500) – He’s missed the last two cuts but has played well here before, including a T9 in 2019. Think of him as the higher-risk, higher-reward Brian Stuard, who I’m also considering for a few GPPs. He’s No. 26 in the model that uses a data set including course history metrics. Armour is boom-or-bust in PGA DFS, but I might take the risk this week.
Cameron Percy (DK $6,500) – A perfect type of player to debut here and flirt with an early lead because he likes it. He should like it, as he tears apart Par 3s in the 200-225 range (tied for tops in the field over his last 50 rounds with Talor Gooch) and is No. 14 on my mixed model despite the glaring lack of course history. He doesn’t feel like a punt, so he could get a few more plays as folks realize that – but for you SW predictors in Discord and followers (I confess, I VERY MUCH AM one), he might come in a little higher (or lower) than 5%.
Wes Bryan (DK $6,400) – T25 at the Heritage and he’s played well here before. Large-field GPP only but someone to consider in your stars-and-scrubs builds. Known as a less-than-driver player, Bryan hits decent approaches when he’s allowed to club down from the big stick. He’s been learning to embrace tougher tracks like this, so he’s fine for 5-10% ownership in 20 max GPPs.
Sean O’Hair (DK $6,200) – He’s made the cut here a bunch of times AND has a T12 (2018) and T2 (2015) in his last two attempts here. O’Hair’s form is hot garbage, so he’s really only a consideration for enormous GPPs in limited ownership, but at least there’s a viable narrative – rare for this admittedly desperate price range in PGA DFS.
Additional GPP punts: Brian Stuard, Austin Cook (GPP), Danny Lee
In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at The Masters and helping you find some winning teams to boost your bankroll!
Dustin Johnson (DK $11,500) – Because of this week’s soft pricing and slew of viable golfers in the $7K range, getting DJ into your teams won’t be that much of a hassle, even with one more $9K and up player in the mix. Despite two less-than-stellar finishes at the WGC-Workday and Players Championship, DJ still offers the most consistent upside at this venue, where he won in November. It’s playing differently now, but he knows that. Don’t overthink this – get exposure to DJ in all formats.
Jon Rahm (DK $11,000) – The Rahm/DJ combo leaves you with $6,875 per golfer for the remaining four slots on DK, and with some of the talent in this field, even those stars-and-scrubs teams don’t look too scrubby. But there are some key golfers I like in the $7.5-$8.5K range that I won’t be able to get if I use the top two salaries – so most of my teams will feature one or the other, and in some cases, neither. Rahm, a new father, seems a little more cash-viable than the next two guys, and he’s fine for single-entry GPPs.
Bryson DeChambeau (DK $10,800) – I know he’s in Sia’s initial picks column and Joel loves him – and I agree he has plenty of upside – but Bryson’s aggressive approach on Par 4s worries me a bit. He tends to attack those holes and try to create his own scoring chances instead of treading water and waiting for his opportunities. If it didn’t work in November, when he finished T34, it may not work in April, even with the new driver that he says will mitigate the shot dispersal. I’ll tread lightly with him, but I think he’s fun to watch and root for.
Rory McIlroy (DK $10,100) – Rory may very well be the same golfer who was dominating before the pandemic, but it’s hard to see that in his results. Still – he managed to finish T5 here in November and certainly has enough Top 10 finishes at Augusta (and no finish worse than T21 in his last five tries) to land in the Top 5 again. He’s never won here, but he’s guaranteed for low ownership relative to the rest of this bunch and that really intrigues me.
Patrick Cantlay (DK $9,800) – Like Sia, I like the price on Cantlay and think he’s about as solid an overall golfer as you can find in the field, without any glaring weaknesses and sporting a game face for the ages. Much like Patrick Reed, Cantlay is not here to make friends, and Augusta National is a fine a venue as any for his first major win. Ownership will probably end up between 15-20%, but I really like him for single-entry GPPs and I’ll have exposure in all formats.
Also consider: Justin Thomas (GPP), Xander Schauffele, Collin Morikawa
Jordan Spieth (DK $9,400) – Fresh off a win at the Valero, folks will be dying to play Spieth at the site of his greatest triumph and most epic collapse. He knows the course, he’s playing great golf (even if he’s still a little erratic off the tee and on some approaches), and I’ll have a hard time fading him, even when his ownership spikes. Last week I said I was excited to play him, and I clearly didn’t play him enough. My single-entry team had 5/6 make the cut and cash in every instance, but it earned about one-hundredth of what it should have because I had Tony Finau (the lone MC) instead of Spieth as my big spend.
Webb Simpson (DK $9,000) – Simpson’s course history is a lesson in perseverance and scholarship, as he’s learned how to “master” Augusta in recent years. Now in his tenth year playing the Masters, he’s in position for another Top 10 and continued, under-the-radar success. I’ll have Simpson at about 25% in my GPPs and he’s on the short list for my single-entry player pool. I may even play around with some Milly builds that have him as my only $9K and up player, and everybody else on the team is $7,700 and up.
Viktor Hovland (DK $8,700) – The experts are giving Hovland no love this week, and while he’s in the Top 20 of my model, I can understand why – as a really strong short game seems like a must to win at Augusta. Hovland may not be the best around the greens, but he’s awesome on Par 5s and that’s where most of the scoring is done at this golf course. If his ownership dips a little bit from the early projections, I’ll increase my shares.
Hideki Matsuyama (DK $8,300) – I normally don’t play a lot of Matsuyama because of his erratic putting, but he has a bunch of Top 20 finishes at Augusta because of his amazing ball-striking and performance “around” the greens. His overall short game still ranks in the Top 40 of the field for Augusta and its closest course comps, and he seems to know where to miss in off the tee here, since he’s navigated his poor tee shots well in the past.
Matthew Fitzpatrick (DK $8,100) – Fitzpatrick could have been priced at $9K and I’d have interest, because this is a course where he could win – if he can just elude the one bad round he seems to have at every major. His form is alarmingly consistent, with five straight Top 20s internationally and four straight within the Top 11 since the Genesis. He’s a fine play in all formats and there’s always the chance he finally breaks through.
Sergio Garcia (DK $7,900) – Garcia still hits it like a beast off the tee (long and straight) and he’s got the requisite experience at Augusta to tackle this difficult layout and win – or at least contend – again. He’s one of my favorite value plays in the mid-range and while there’s inherent risk with him because of his volatility, it’s a week without too many guarantees.
Paul Casey (DK $7,700) – A missed cut in 2019 (which started out with an uncharacteristic 81) is just about the only recent blemish on Casey’s record at Augusta, which includes a T6 in 2015, T4 in 2016 and solo 6th in 2017. He’s had a monster resurgence in 2021, with six straight finishes inside the Top 12, including a win in Dubai and T5s at both Pebble Beach and the Players.
Also consider: Patrick Reed, Brooks Koepka (GPP), Tyrrell Hatton (GPP), Lee Westwood, Daniel Berger, Scottie Scheffler, Cameron Smith, Bubba Watson (GPP)
Louis Oosthuizen (DK $7,500) – As long as his back doesn’t lock up before his tee time, Louis should be a solid pick this week at Augusta, where he almost always plays well. In many ways, Oosty is like the still-under-40, cheaper version of Lee Westwood. The South African has one thing that Westwood doesn’t – and that’s a major championship victory. He’s among the top golfers in this value range.
Will Zalatoris (DK $7,300) – What Zalatoris lacks in experience he makes up for in talent and fearlessness, and he proved in the U.S. Open at Winged Foot he can take whatever a golf course and extremely windy conditions has to offer. He’s a solid bet to make the cut, and even though he’s a first-timer at Augusta, he’s played casual rounds and seems to understand (from quotes and interviews) how to play the course.
Max Homa (DK $7,100) – The fact that Homa won at Riviera factors into his inclusion in the value picks, because he’s got minimal experience here (just a missed cut at the November event) and finishes just inside the Top 40 on my model. But if I’m looking for GPP plays with confidence and upside, he’s a solid pick.
Corey Conners (DK $6,900) – If you’re looking to avoid chalk in GPPs and assume more risk, then maybe you’d prefer to spend the extra $100 and grab Victor Perez, who should come in under 5% ownership. But Conners is a much safer pick, with two made cuts in two tries and a top 10 in November. Granted, we could see a few three-putts and greenside abominations from the Canadian ball-striking sensation, but he’s so good tee-to green it might not matter. A staple in cash games for his low price and a guy to watch this year.
Si Woo Kim (DK $6,7