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In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities and helping you find some winning teams!

PGA DFS pricing is elevated for everybody this week with such a watered-down field, but we’ve got a bunch of viable picks for you to build a winner.

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PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Weak but full tournament field of 156 golfers
  • Only third time playing this PGA event, so still not much course history
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 65 and ties play the weekend
  • The course: TPC Twin Cities (Minneapolis)
    • 7,431 yards, Par 71 – Arnold Palmer/Tom Lehman design/consult
    • Bentgrass Greens
    • Course features 27 water hazards and 72 sand traps
    • Past performance here indicates some correlation with Rocket Mortgage performance
    • Ball-striker’s course
    • 2020 Defending champ: Michael Thompson at -19 (Matthew Wolff won in 2019 at -21)
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach; SG: Ball Striking, SG: Off the Tee; Birdie or Better %, Eagles Gained, Par 4s Gained (450-500), Par 5s Gained (550-600),

The Picks:

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

Dustin Johnson (DK $11,300) – If DJ’s game is on, he could walk away with this tournament, as it’s a gettable track that will yield tons of birdies and eagles. He also prefers putting on Bentgrass, so there’s that. If we can find enough value in the $7K range this week – and I think we can – we shouldn’t shy away from him in single-entry GPPs.

Tony Finau (DK $10,500) – Finau is expensive this week, but he belongs in this elite company as he and the guys north of $10K are head-and-shoulders ahead of the field in terms of talent. He’s a staple of my builds and I’ll be coming in around double the projected field ownership.

Sergio Garcia (DK $9,900) – This is where the drop-off starts in terms of risk, and Garcia’s is slightly mitigated by the fact that putter isn’t the most important club in the bag this week. I like him a tad better on Bermuda, but Garcia should be able to contend for a win in this watered-down field.

Matthew Wolff (DK $9,700) – He’s GPP only, but as Joel points out in the Breakdown, we need to be ready to pivot in large-field GPP if ownership gets out of control. There’s some chatter that his ball-striking is really coming into form and that’s a huge plus heading into a tournament where he’s already won.

Also consider: Louis Oosthuizen (GPP), Cameron Tringale

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

Emiliano Grillo (DK $9,300) – Grillo sticks out as a high-upside, medium-risk play with solid form coming in. In his Initial Picks article, Sia points out that Grillo was a T3 here last year, and that’s exactly why I’m drawn to the Argentinian despite the increase in salary from what we’re used to for Emiliano.

Cameron Davis (DK $9,200) – He won the Rocket Mortgage at the start of the month, and the correlation makes me interested in him in GPPs. Davis also finished T12 here last year, so there’s a lot to like about the strides he’s made in 2021, even if he’s not the most consistent player above $9K.

Keegan Bradley (DK $8,800) – Bradley struggles with the outer, but he’s one of the best ball strikers around and this could be a great spot for a bounce back. I’d feel more safe about cash game use if his price was a little lower, but he might make my single-entry team for his upside in this field.

Stewart Cink (DK $8,700) – Cink is playing some of the best golf of his career and is woefully underpriced given the strength of this field. Safe for cash, but he could get popular if you’re targeting him for GPPs.

Maverick McNealy (DK $8,400) – One of our favorite birdie-fest golfers, McNealy is a guy who I’ll be overweight on regardless of his final ownership projections. This is his first run at the TPC Twin Cities, but I’m buying.

Luke List (DK $8,100) – List has struck the ball well in 2021 and posted consecutive top five finishes once his newborn son was deemed healthy. The veteran also led the field last week in SG: T2G and ranks No. 22 on tour in that metric. You can do a lot worse in PGA DFS than picking this guy.

Doug Ghim (DK $7,900) – One of these weeks, the talented Ghim is going to put together four good rounds and win a PGA Tour event. He’s made three straight cuts after an MC at the memorial but was T14 the week before at the Charles Schwab. Ghim isn’t safe, but he could be worth the risk.

Chris Kirk (DK $7,900) – This is exactly the kind of PGA DFS tournament where you wonder why you didn’t go back to Kirk, who finished T12 at the Rocket Mortgage before last week’s MC at the Open Championship. A much-improved golfer in 2021, I’m banking on a better finish than the T41 he posted at the 3M last year.

Richy Werenski (DK $7,600) – A high-risk GPP option I’ll be using in about 2-3 out of 20 lineups, Werenski can get on a roll fast and plant himself on the leaderboard with the best of the mid-range golfers. He’s worth another look at this event, where he finished T3 last year.

Also consider: Robert MacIntyre, Patton Kizzire, Lucas Herbert, Charl Schwartzel (GPP), Gary Woodland, Hank Lebioda (GPP), Ryan Moore, Lanto Griffin, Patrick Rodgers (GPP), Mito Pereira

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

Jhonattan Vegas (DK $7,500) – Vegas checks a few important boxes this week, and his weaknesses are mitigated by the layout and putting surfaces. I like Vegas on soft courses you can attack (T11 at the John Deere), and this is certainly one of those.

Erik Van Rooyen (DK $7,400) – Van Rooyen was actually $8,800 in this event last year, way more expensive than both Grillo and Tringale, who were both in the low-to-mid-$7K range and are now over $9K. Sure, it’s been a wild year, but EVR still has some upside, especially with SG: Putting (where he ranks No. 105 on Tour) not as important here.

Matt Kuchar (DK $7,300) – The last birdie-fest course he played was at the AT&T Byron Nelson, when he finished T17 at -16. I really like his chances at a top 20 here and his ownership should stay relatively low.

Kyle Stanley (DK $7,300) –Like Vegas, Stanley makes sense for courses you can go after and post lots of birdies, and I’m intrigued by the still-depressed price despite seven straight made cuts. The upside is lacking a bit, but he seems fine for a last piece in more balanced builds where we want to stay away from the sub-$7K golfers.

Bo Hoag (DK $7,000) – The pickings get slim once we get down to $7K, but I’ve got plenty of interest in Hoag this week. He posted a T12 here last year and is coming in after a T11 at the Barbasol and three straight made cuts (T47 at the John Deere, T33 at the Rocket Mortgage).

Kevin Tway (DK $6,600) – The (Friday) birthday narrative has been discussed ad nauseum on the WinDaily writers text message thread, and again in the Breakdown. This is one of the only venues where Tway plays well, so he’s worth considering at this price.

More value golfers for GPPs: Troy Merritt, Michael Thompson, Adam Schenk, Chez Reavie, Scott Stallings, Pat Perez, Sepp Straka, Tom Lewis (GPP), Adam Long (GPP)

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

Satoshi Kodaira (DK $6,500) – Kodaira hurt a lot of folks at high ownership when he was the DFS darling bargain play a couple weeks ago, but he played well at the Barbasol last week (T20). He also made the cut here in 2019 and should do so again. The upside is there at this price point.

Bronson Burgoon (DK $6,500) – BB was my Bargain Blowout Baby (BBB) at the John Deere, and he ruined a great start (67 in round 1) with a 72 on Friday that knocked him out of the weekend. We’ll go back to the well this week, as I think he should fare well here, where he’s made the cut in both tries.

Robbie Shelton (DK $6,500) – He’s been bad this July, with three straight MCs, but I like his bounce-back chances on a course where he’s had success before (T3 last year). Again – he’s a GPP-only play and I might use him in up to 3/20 lineups.

Additional punts: Josh Teator, Michael Gligic, Fabian Gomez, Michael Gellerman

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We’re giving you some top PGA DFS picks and looking for green screens at the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands!

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Full, deep field of 156 golfers
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 65 and ties play the weekend
  • Defending champion: Dustin Johnson (19 over Kevin Streelman’s -18)
  • The course: TPC River Highlands (Cromwell, CT)
    • 6,841 yards, Par 70 – Old 1928 design reworked by Pete Dye in 1982
    • Varied types of holes on a short course that can produce low scoring (site of Jim Furyk’s 58 in 2016)
    • Small Bentgrass/Poa Greens
    • Just two par 5s, but one is short and yields lots of birdies and eagles; and two driveable par 4s around 300 yards
    • Experience with Pete Dye layouts can help, and there’s plenty of course history at TPC River Highlands
    • Distance not an issue here as scoring clubs more important
  • Focus Stat Categories: SG: Approach, Par 4s: 400-450, Opportunities Gained, SG: OTT, SG: Tee to Green, SG: Putting (Bentgrass and Poa), SG: Around the Green, Birdie or Better %

The Picks:

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

Dustin Johnson (DK $11,400) – DJ’s game doesn’t look too bad heading into the Travelers, where he’s the defending champ and one of the betting favorites at 12-1. Last year’s title was helped tremendously by a second round 64 and a scorching-hot 61 on Saturday, but it took him a bit to warm up and he closed the deal with a solid 67 on Sunday. That’s just how he could win again this year – with his talent shining through in a couple of low rounds and solid ball-striking carrying him through when his mojo ain’t working.

Patrick Cantlay (DK $10,400) – His projected ownership will probably be the highest in this tier for the consistency he’s shown in PGA DFS events, excluding the poor stretch of MCs from the Players to the Wells Fargo during the spring. Believe it or not, Cantlay is actually the current FedExCup points leader with three top 15s at the Travelers since 2018. I won’t have as many shares as I will of DJ, but I feel like some exposure is warranted.

Paul Casey (DK $9,900) – Casey is my favorite play under $10K and has a great course history at TPC River Highlands, where he’s 6-for-6 with four top five finishes. He also finished among the top 10 in his last three starts (EURO and PGA combined) and is coming off a very respectable T7 at the U.S. Open. Sia is on board and so is Stix, so I’m buying some Casey this week and hoping for another Top 10 finish.

Scottie Scheffler (DK $9,600) – Scheffler missed the cut in his Travelers debut last year, but he was amid a bad stretch of golf during the beginning of the spectator-free COVID tournaments. An opening round 70 sealed his fate, but he’s playing solid golf right now (T7 at the U.S. Open) and checks all the boxes this week.

Also consider: Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka (GPP), Patrick Reed

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

Kevin Streelman (DK $9,400) – He’s a solid play in all formats, and he’s probably worth using in single-entry builds for his galling consistency. Nick talked a little bit in The Breakdown about how he’s a near-lock for the Top 40 every week and we just saw him play some marvelous golf at the U.S. Open. “Streels” is one of those guys who just seems to show up every week.

Tony Finau (DK $9,200) – The jury is still out on when we’ll see Finau get his next win, but the price seems fair this week for a guy who just needs the putter to show up to realize his Top 10 upside. He’s missed his last two cuts here but had a T25 and T17 in 2016 and 2017. I’d steer clear in cash games, but he’s worth of consideration for GPPs.

Bubba Watson (DK $8,900) – He’s very popular this week and seems to be everywhere in the “experts” picks on plenty of sites, but he’s not nearly as safe a play as that would dictate. It’s been a while since I’ve seen him play his true “A” game, and the birdie runs are coming less frequently than a few years ago, when he won this tournament in 2018. I’ll have minimal exposure, and he’s not in my player pool for single-entry or cash games.

Brian Harman (DK $8,800) – Harman typically plays about a half-stroke better on Dye courses, and he’s an accurate driver who just closed out a solid week with a one-over 72 on Sunday at the U.S. Open, finishing T19. He’s got a couple of Top 10 finishes at the Travelers in his last three tries (MC in the tumultuous 2020) and has now placed among the top 20 in seven of eight starts going back to his T3 at the Players.

Si Woo Kim (DK $8,500) –Another “Dye desirable,” Kim has made three of his last four cuts at the Travelers with a T11 in 2020 and solid finishes in 2016 and 2018. His form isn’t bad either, with a T9 at the Memorial and T40 last week at a grueling U.S. Open on a course that didn’t; necessarily fit his strengths. He’s a fine GPP play this week.

Keegan Bradley (DK $7,900) – Bradley likes Pete Dye courses and this is the first of two “home games” for the underpriced golfer, who has had a really strong 2021. He finished T2 in 2019 and makes sense for all kinds of builds this week.

Francesco Molinari, (DK $7,700) – Molinari is rounding into form and while he doesn’t play a lot of events, he always has a shot at winning because he can get ridiculously hot with the putter. I think the T13 finish at the U.S. Open should give him the confidence necessary to capitalize on his opportunities this week and make a splash on the weekend.

Doc Redman (DK $7,600) – After a stretch of spotty play earlier this season, Redman has turned in some solid performances in recent weeks, posting a T9 at the AT&T Byron Nelson and a T2 at the Palmetto Championship at Congaree. He also debuted here last season with a T11 and he’s usually a decent leverage play that’s a little off-the-radar.

Also consider: Abraham Ancer (GPP), Joaquin Niemann, Cameron Smith (GPP), Harris English, Sam Burns (GPP), Max Homa (GPP), Jason Day (GPP)

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

Lanto Griffin (DK $7,400) – Griffin’s ball-striking was good at the U.S. Open and while he didn’t miss the cut, I was hoping for a better finish than T35. There’s a bunch of high-upside/high-risk golfers in this price range, and Lanto fits the bill for GPPs and as a 100-1 longshot to win.

Rickie Fowler (DK $7,300) – I’m a huge Fowler fan and the disappointment of missing the U.S. Open this year has to be weighing on the veteran golfer. Rickie’s game has had its ups and downs but has shown improvement over his last two events. There’s not much recent history at the Travelers to go form, but he had a T13 in 2014, closing with a 64 on Sunday. A return to New England and a course that fits his game could be just what he needs as he and Allison Stokke await the birth of their first child.

Mackenzie Hughes (DK $7,100) – He might get chalky after three days of brilliance at the U.S. Open (but not a fourth), because the price is very nice. The Canadian is 4-for-4 at the Travelers with an impressive scoring average (68.19) and a T3 last year. He’s in play for all formats.

Carlos Ortiz (DK $7,100) – If you need a pivot from Hughes with just as much upside but a lot more risk, look no further than Ortiz. He’s missed the cut here in his last two Travelers appearances but finished T17 in 2016 and has the chops to post some low scores here.

Chez Reavie (DK $7,000) – The $7K range is loaded with players who we’d like to play when they’re in good form, and Reavie makes for a wonderful GPP play this week as he’s coming off a T14 at the Palmetto and T40 at the U.S. Open. Reavie doesn’t typically play well on Dye courses, but we an make an exception this week because it’s a good spot.

Kyle Stanley (DK $7,000) – Stanley isn’t a very good putter, but his iron play is consistently strong and he’s once again underpriced for what he offers in PGA DFS. His course history is good and he’s a real bargain this week given his Top 20 upside.

Adam Long (DK $6,800) – Long has finished T20-T26 in his last two tournaments and is a solid ball-striker who’s accurate off the tee – an important factor in creating opportunities here. If he can keep form having the one blowup round that usually mars his chances, he’ll be in good shape for the weekend.

More value golfers to consider: Kevin Na (GPP), Aaron Wise, Brendan Steele (GPP), Stewart Cink, Patton Kizzire (GPP), Will Gordon (GPP), Ryan Moore (GPP), Scott Stallings (GPP), Henrik Norlander (GPP), Hank Lebioda (GPP), Wyndham Clark (GPP), Austin Eckroat (GPP)

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

Brian Stuard (DK $6,400) – A lot of folks will look to Satoshi Kodaira and the very consistent Vincent Whaley, but I like Stuard’s chances of rebounding after missed cuts at the Palmetto and U.S. Open. He has an extensive course history with spotty results, but something clicked last year en route to a T20, a finish I think he could duplicate here in 2021.

Tyler Duncan (DK $6,300) – He’s a total longshot (and hasn’t posted a Top 10 since he won the RSM in 2019), but he’s accurate off the tee and has made three straight cuts at this event. If you need a final piece and only have $6,300 to spend, he’s worth throwing in one or two out of 20 GPPs.

Additional GPP punts: Satoshi Kodaira, Tom Lewis, Vincent Whaley

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In this edition of PGA DFS picks, we’re looking for a big payday at the Memorial Tournament and helping you find some winning teams!

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • VERY strong invitational field of 120 golfers
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 65 and ties play the weekend
  • Defending champion: Jon Rahm (-9)
  • 2019 champ: Patrick Cantlay
  • The course: Muirfield Village (Dublin, OH)
    • > 7,500 yards, Par 72 – Jack Nicklaus design (1972)
    • Bentgrass Greens and other features endured massive reconstruction following 2020 tournaments
    • Layout remains roughly the same but trees added to increase difficulty off the tee, possibly hurting some longer hitters
    • Course comps with Firestone and Augusta National
    • Scoring on Par 5s crucial on this difficult track
  • Expect soft conditions late Thursday after Wednesday and Thursday morning rain and some wind, which could cause delays
  • Current advantage seems to be late Thursday times
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach; SG: T2G, SG: Around the Green, SG: Putting (Bentgrass), Par 4s Gained (450-500), Bogey Avoidance, Birdie or Better %, Sand Saves, Proximity (175-200), Scrambling

The Picks:

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

Jon Rahm (DK $11,100) – Since it’s obvious there’s no real No. 1 player in the world, I’m fine looking to Rahm and his solid all-around game (he ranks third in the field for SG:T2G) – even though he’s had a somewhat spotty 2021. Jordan Spieth is guaranteed to be chalky after another great PGA DFS finish (solo second at the Charles Schwab), but he might be a little drained after three straight weeks of very competitive golf. Rahm’s ownership should be down even though he’s the defending champ, and his T8 finish at the PGA points to him trending upward following a week of rest to defend his title, which was not without controversy.

Rory McIlroy (DK $10,600) – Another golfer who’s been at the top of the mountain, McIlroy broke his slump at the Wells Fargo and returns to the site of one of the courses where he actually hasn’t won before. He’s a contrarian, GPP-only play for me this week, but his ownership should come back down a bit after a disappointing T49 at the PGA Championship. He probably won’t be on my single-entry teams, but I’ll try to be overweight in 20-max and larger field tournaments, where there’s still plenty of leverage in selecting one of the game’s all-time great players.

Justin Thomas (DK $10,200) – Where Bryson DeChambeau tends to force some things (like last year’s quintuple bogey OB meltdown in Round 2 when he ended up missing the cut), Thomas knows to plug away after bad shots on Muirfield. He just missed winning last year in the Workday (also played at Muirfield a week in advance of the 2020 Memorial), and we’re getting a big discount this year as he’s priced below his usual PGA DFS salary in the elite tier. I do like Bryson a bit in GPPs, but Thomas is probably the safer play.

Patrick Cantlay (DK $9,500) – We have a few safe bets for Top 15 finishes in the $9,500-$10K range, including weekly cash game maven Viktor Hovland and Xander Schauffele, who makes for an excellent GPP play after a missed cut at the PGA Championship. As much as I like Xander and his T3 finish at Augusta, Cantlay has shown winning upside on this course. Despite a stretch of poor play that resulted in four straight missed cuts, he could be worth a look given his excellent track record at Muirfield Village.

Also consider: Jordan Spieth (Cash), Bryson DeChambeau (GPP) Viktor Hovland (Cash), Xander Schauffele (GPP)

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

Hideki Matsuyama (DK $9,400) – He won here in 2014 and his short game confidence is soaring after his win at Augusta, a venue that has some correlations with Muirfield Village. Deki is the best option and priced modestly just after the elite tier, which Sia mentioned in the breakdown that he might avoid altogether. Deki could be the linchpin for your balanced PGA DFS builds that focus on these golfers in this loaded $7-9K range.

Matthew Fitzpatrick (DK $8,700) – Fitzpatrick has played well here in his brief history, making the cut in his 2019 debut and finishing solo third last year in just his second try. I like this short-game specialist’s chances on these small greens even better in 2021, when the course has been made a little more difficult to weed out some of the longer hitters who may not be as accurate off the tee. He made the honorable mention in Isaiah’s picks article, and you all know how much I love the wispy Fitzpatrick in GPPs.

Cameron Smith (DK $8,600) –Smith has putted very well in 2021, and he ranks T6 this week in three-putt avoidance – a key stat this week. In fact, three-putt avoidance is the main reason I’m not including Collin Morikawa in my elite picks and prefer Hovland and JT in that range. His ball-striking isn’t quite on the same level as players like Keegan Bradley and Charley Hoffman, but the all-around game could see him break through this year and makes him interesting for GPPs.

Louis Oosthuizen (DK $8,500) – Both Louis and Hoffman are excellent cash game plays and can be used for single-entry GPPs as well. Oosty is solid with the flat stick (tops in the field for 2021 in SG: Putting) and has three straight made cuts here despite the lack of a Top 10 finish, but he has notched a top 10s in his last two starts and gained over five strokes on approach (SG:APP) in each of his last two tourneys. He’s worth a look in all formats and should stay mostly off the radar.

Charley Hoffman (DK $8,300) –On the flip side, everybody will be on Hoffman again, since he just hasn’t left the leaderboard lately. With Top 20s in five straight events and his best golf seemingly reserved for tougher courses. He’s taken his game to a new level in 2021, and while he will be very popular in all formats, I can’t advocate fading him in cash or single-entry GPP.

Rickie Fowler (DK $8,000) – He’s finally got some good mojo going after a strong PGA Championship, and now that he’s priced above $8K again, he’s fine for GPPs. I wouldn’t be forcing him into single-entry or any cash games, but he’s finally hitting some decent approaches and we know he has the short game (especially on Bentgrass) to finish in the Top 15 here. And unlike Patrick Reed (who I’m fading this week), he’s easy to root for.

Marc Leishman (DK $7,800) – He hasn’t missed a cut here since 2010, and he’s performed quite well with a slew of Top 15s over the past 10 years. Leishman might get forgotten even at this bargain price, so I’m looking to use him in some of my tournaments and just hope he doesn’t burn me – which he almost always does.

Christian Bezuidenhout (DK $7,600) – CBZ might just be the best putter in the world, and he relies heavily on his elite short game to place in events on both sides of the Atlantic. Over the South African’s last 50 rounds, he ranks 20th in Bogey Avoidance, second in SG: Putting and 10th in SG: Around the Green – great stats heading into the Memorial.

Also consider: Tony Finau, Scottie Scheffler (GPP), Shane Lowry, Billy Horschel, Keegan Bradley, Gary Woodland, Adam Scott, Jason Day (GPP), Emiliano Grillo (GPP)

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

Kevin Streelman (DK $7,500) – Before 2015, Streelman was all over the place at the Memorial, but he’s made six straight cuts here and the increase in difficulty may help him stay relevant among the longer hitters. I’m a little worried that he’s burned out from playing a lot of high-stakes golf in the last few weeks, but he’s a tour veteran who’s used to grinding, so that shouldn’t keep you from rostering him in GPPs.

Matt Wallace (DK $7,400) – Wallace makes for a wonderful value play in this price range, especially considering his T4 finish here in 2020 and the decent form he arrives with. The wind blowing harder on Thursday morning and his early tee time doesn’t bother me as much as some of the other guys who don’t strike it as well in the wind.

Patton Kizzire (DK $7,300) – The tightening of the driving demands this year is cause for some concern, but Kizzire is popping in many of the focus stat categories and his putting (Top 10 in both SG: P and 3-putt avoidance) has been awesome in 2021. The big fella hasn’t had much success at the Memorial, but there’s a first time for everything and his game is looking good upon arrival.

Brendan Todd (DK $7,200) – Todd is a straight hitter with an overall game that’s shaping up a bit since a positive COVID test forced him to withdraw from the Wells Fargo, He missed the cut at the PGA Championship but finished T8 last week at Colonial on Bentgrass greens. I’m not planning on being crazy overweight, but the price is good and he finished T22 here last June.

Luke List (DK $6,900) – List finished T10 here last June and while he won’t be popular this week, he seems to be a textbook GPP play considering the price and the dynamic quality his game provides. Far from safe, List often has meltdowns on the green and is biggest problem is the 3-putt, where he ranks near the bottom of the PGA rankings with guys like List as my “problematic play” – a low ownership dart throw who could shine if he avoids the three-jacks with the flatstick this week.

Danny Willett (DK $6,600) – Willett plays well in wind, so the early Thursday time doesn’t throw me off too much, and he’s had a couple of Top 35 finishes here in his only two attempts in 2019 and 2020. I love the price, and while he might not win, he makes for excellent value this week and could make for a pretty cheap “last two spots” filler play in stars-and-scrubs builds, especially alongside some of the guys in the next tier. For instance, rostering Wallace, Willett and a mispriced Kyle Stanley gives you $9,966 for your top three spends.

More value golfers to consider: Si Woo Kim, Chris Kirk, Sebastian Munoz, Aaron Wise, Troy Merritt (GPP), C.T. Pan, Adam Hadwin (GPP), Mackenzie Hughes (GPP)

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

Brendan Steele (DK $6,500) – Like many of the golfers priced in this range, Steele’s putter suffers a bit, but he’s made 14 of his last 17 cuts and that’s a nice bonus for any golfer under $7K. He’s not that strong a finisher, so the upside is a little bit lacking as well, but he had a week of rest and checks in as my “gut” punt play in 1/20 large-field GPPs.

Kyle Stanley (DK $6,100) – Stanley’s late addition resulted in a pricing error by DK, but he’s played very well at the Memorial in the past, with a T6 in 2018 and T2 in 2019. The course may play a little tougher than it did then, but Stanley needs to be considered as a core stars-and-scrubs play if you’re spending big money with your first few selections.

Russell Knox (DK $6,100) – Like Sia, I was drawn to the super low price and upside that Knox offers. He’s not nearly as “safe” as Stanley – although both golfers can struggle with the putter – and while the early tee time on Thursday isn’t quite as beneficial, he’s 4-for-4 here since 2016.

Additional GPP punts: Patrick Rodgers, Michael Thompson, Henrik Norlander

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The second major of the year in PGA DFS provides an opportunity for you to dominate with our winning picks and analysis at the PGA Championship.

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Major championship field of 155 golfers
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 70 and ties play the weekend, no secondary cut
  • Third big event at this host course (second PGA Championship and one Ryder Cup)
  • The course: Kiawah Island Ocean Course (Kiawah Island, SC – Pete Dye design)
    • Par 72: 7,800+ yards – a very long course without too many birdie holes and trouble everywhere in the forms of ocean, cliffs, thick marshland vegetation and huge traps
    • Seven par 4s over 450 yards
    • All Paspalum surfaces and small greens – Paspalum grows with no grain, so less roll out and lots of spin
    • Fully exposed links-style layout, but fairways not wide open and wind will be a factor
    • Hard to find comps, but El Camaleon and Puntacana both have Paspalum and the toughest Pete Dye courses (Whistling Straits, Harbour Town, TPC Sawgrass & TPC Stadium) provide some comparisons
  • Weather: Slight chance of some rain but mostly sunny skies Thursday and Sunday with best scoring day looking like Saturday (winds at just 10 mph)
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, SG: Off the Tee, SG: Short Game/Around the Green, Bogey and Three-Putt Avoidance, SG: Putting, Par 4: (450-500)

The Picks:

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

Rory McIlroy (DK $11,500) – Fresh off a one-stroke win at the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow, McIlroy is the betting favorite this week and the top-priced golfer on the board. While there’s no way I’m fading him completely this week, he’s bound to be popular, so I’m okay coming a little underweight on the field. The course – where he won the 2012 PGA Championship by a decisive eight shots – fits his game well. The eventual Hall of Famer from Northern Ireland is averaging 318 yards per drive this year, good for second on the PGA Tour, but his driving accuracy ranks just 175th – a stat that still scares me a little bit. He missed the cut at both the Players and the Masters, so he’ll be out to prove he’s truly back this week – right along with the cadre of fans he draws so much energy from.

Justin Thomas (DK $11,300) – JT’s win at the Players’ Championship on the Pete Dye design at TPC Sawgrass convinced me his game is in fine enough shape to contend at the coastal test of Kiawah Island – which earned the moniker “Looney Dunes” when it was played at the 1991 Ryder Cup. Thomas already has one PGA Championship under his belt (2017) on a course that provided a tough test for its competitors, and I like his ability to bounce back from bad bounces, bad holes and bad stretches a lot more than the sometimes erratic Bryson DeChambeau and Jon Rahm, who may currently lack the killer instinct and unflappable mindset to perform at his best this week. JT’s game is a complete one – and if he can continue to gain strokes around the green and get hot with the putter, the sky’s the limit.

Jordan Spieth (DK $10,100) – Spieth has played excellent golf in 2021, and his ball-striking is finally coming around the match his epic short game. We did see Spieth chunk a few chips and pitches last week, but I’ll chalk that up to anecdotal errors and assume the empirical brilliance he’s demonstrated under pressure around the greens throughout his career will take precedence over a few minor flubs. Golf Digest ranked the Ocean Course the toughest in the country, and Tiger Woods has compared the Ocean Course’s long, links-like layout to Whistling Straits, where Spieth contended against eventual winner Jason Day in 2015. He’s a fine play in all formats, and since he’s healthy now, I like him a little better than the more expensive Dustin Johnson, who WD last week due to a knee injury.

Xander Schauffele (DK $9,600) – Xander’s my favorite play in the lower half of the elite tier, although he’s still waiting to hoist his first major trophy after several close calls. Schauffele’s performance in majors during his brief career has been quite impressive – with top 25s in 11 of his 15 major events to date, including eight top 10s, six top 5s and a T3 just two starts ago at the Masters in April. Since then, he’s finished T11 at the Zurich alongside teammate Patrick Cantlay and T14 at the Wells Fargo. His time is coming, and this week might very well be it.

Also consider: Dustin Johnson (GPP), Collin Morikawa

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

Viktor Hovland (DK $9,300) – Hovland’s consistent play in 2021 includes just one MC and an incredible six finishes inside the Top 6 in his last 10 starts. He’s been a free square in cash games and provides ample GPP value despite his popularity in PGA DFS. He’s probably the least contrarian you can go if your goal is to build a safe lineup with some upside, and while he’s yet to win a major (or even crack a Top 10) in his young career, he’s not very far from greatness. His demeanor, his ball-striking and his positive attitude should go a long way this week in all formats.

Cameron Smith (DK $8,900) – Smith is my favorite pick in the $8-9K range and I’ll be pinning a lot of my GPP hopes on him posting a Top 10 finish. He’s lodged somewhere in the top 15 or 20 power rankings for a lot of sharps this week, and his dominance on par 3s and par 5s over the past few months points to an ability to capitalize on scoring opportunities. That, combined with his ability to avoid three-putts (third overall heading into this week) usually helps him get it done regardless of the venue.

Will Zalatoris (DK $8,800) – Zalatoris seems to save his best golf for the biggest moments and the toughest golf courses, so he’s definitely one to watch this week at the Ocean Course. His seemingly effortless combination of power off the tee and precision on his approaches took a week off at the Wells Fargo, but he’s a very good bet for a Top 25 at Kiawah Island amid a strong field and a slew of big names who’ve already sealed the deal with multiple major wins. I’m not quite ready to go all-in just yet, but I’ll gladly get ahead of the field in my GPP ownership this week and see where it all shakes out.

Tony Finau (DK $8,600) – I’ve said “never again” too many times to count with Finau, but he’s talking confidently about his ability to win a major (despite just one career PGA Tour win to his credit) and he’s so damn good off the tee. I’ve thrown out a lot of the usual models I’ve been relying on for “lesser” tournaments since attitude and form go a long way in determining performance at a major championship venue this challenging, but Finau is one of the golfers who usually fares well on paper and just seems to lack the fortitude to finish tournaments. He’s flying under the radar this week and the team is off him, but for me there’s some leverage as a GPP pivot in the Will Z/Cam Smith range.

Matthew Fitzpatrick (DK $8,400) – Fitzpatrick killed a lot of PGA DFS lineups this past week but scoring fests like the Byron Nelson are not where the wispy Englishman plays his best golf. His overall short game and precise ball-striking are his biggest strengths, and while he’s not insanely long (No. 168 on tour in Driving Distance), he ranks 16th on tour in SG:OTT – a huge stat this week since missing the fairway won’t be an easy fix on most of these holes. Fitzpatrick is having his best season on the PGA tour in 2020-21, and I can’t advocate leaving him out of your player pool.

Tyrrell Hatton (DK $8,000) – Hatton ranks ninth on the PGA Tour in SG:APP and is in the top 20 for SG:OTT – the top two stats this week. While his performance around the greens remains his biggest bugaboo, he seems to step up and avoid three putts just enough on tough golf courses. He also should be recovered from the positive COVID test that forced him to withdraw from the Valspar in late April. The price is tempting, but I’ll be limiting my ownership levels to around 10% in GPPs since he’s yet to post a Top 15 finish on the PGA Tour in 2021.

Abraham Ancer (DK $7,900) – Ancer is a cut-making and ball-striking machine who’s yet to post a Top 10 major championship finish, but he’s coming in extremely hot: solo fifth at the Valspar, solo second at the Wells Fargo – performances which came on the heels of five straight finishes in the Top 26. He’s always among the leaders in SG:APP and Bogey Avoidance, and the only thing that could keep him from posting another Top 25 this week is his short game. Still – he’ll be a GPP staple and is a fine play in just about any format.

Paul Casey (DK $7,700) – Playing a chalky Casey could end up burning me, but I don’t care. The pedigree and price are just too good to pass up this week. The missed cut at the RBC Heritage is just about the only blemish on his 2021 record, and he’s notched five top 10 finishes this year, including a win at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, which took place at a course grassed with – you guessed it – Paspalum. There are a lot of Euro Tour regulars I like this week, and Casey has proven to have winning upside on the International stage, even if he’s yet to notch a major win.

Marc Leishman (DK $7,600) – Please don’t forget about Leishman this week. He finished T5 at the Masters, and he’s had a slew of good performances in wind, something that he and fellow Aussie Cameron Smith know a lot about from the gusty tracks “down under.” He’s coming off a breezy T21 at TPC Craig Ranch and he finished T27 at Kiawah island in the 2012 PGA Championship. If he’s not mega-popular, I’ll be on board in GPPs and will consider him for a balanced single-entry build.

Also consider: Hideki Matsuyama, Webb Simpson, Patrick Reed (GPP), Daniel Berger, Scottie Scheffler (GPP), Louis Oosthuizen, Corey Conners (Cash)

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

Sam Burns (DK $7,500) – The price is way too low for his current form and ability with the driver and flat stick; his putting numbers have shown marked improvement in 2021 and are the main reason he’s been so good lately. His irons haven’t been awful either, and Burns will be a tough fade if you’re looking for balanced builds. The timing for him playing the best golf of his young career couldn’t be better, and he’s really easy to root for.

Keegan Bradley (DK $7,300) – The 34-year-old has loads of experience on Paspalum, and the way he’s been driving the ball and striking it, he’s going to be a core play of mine in single-entry, GPP and cash. I’ll be approaching 40 percent overall ownership and taking the big plunge. Bradley already has a PGA Championship under his belt – his lone major victory – and he’s playing the best golf of his career since that zenith, which came when he was just a young man of 25.

Charley Hoffman (DK $7,300) – I don’t go overweight on Hoffman, but he plays his best golf in tough competition on long and challenging golf courses. He’s made eight straight cuts and finished outside the top 35 only once (a T52 at the Genesis Invitational) during that stretch – which includes a solo second at the Valero Texas open and consecutive T18s in his last two events.

Jason Kokrak (DK $7,100) – He’s just about the best value on the board, along with veterans Stewart Cink and Charl Schwartzel, and he’s yet to miss a cut in 2021 – a season that’s seen the tour veteran post a T9 at the Players and three more Top 15 finishes. It’s debatable whether or not his breakthrough win in 2020 has given him the confidence to finally contend at a major – where his performance over the past few years has been spotty at best – but this golf course seems to play to his strengths.

Stewart Cink (DK $6,900) – One of the most surprising stats about the 47-year-old PGA Tour stalwart’s recent resurgence is his Driving Distance (No. 23 on tour). That length should help him tackle these long par 4s and his No. 9 rank in Bogey Avoidance will hopefully get him another solid finish in the PGA Championship – a major he hasn’t played since 2018 when he finished T4 at Bellerive Country Club.

Charl Schwartzel (DK $6,800) – The Win Daily team has given you Schwartzel’s name week after week, and I’ve had him covered even before his T26 at the Masters and subsequent T21-T14-T3, a progression that’s been impressive considering the dynamic differences among the courses during that stretch. He’s one of a handful of golfers under $7K who I’ll be rostering in more than 15% of my GPP lineups, and he’s brimming with confidence heading into a major where he’s made the cut six straight times since a missed cut in 2013. Over the course of his career, Schwartzel has 18 Top 25s in the 52 major championships he’s played in a professional career that started when he was just 18 years old in 2002.

Christian Bezuidenhout (DK $6,800) – CBZ, as I like to call him for brevity’s sake, is my off-the-wall value play. He’s piqued my interest for his dominance around the greens, where he ranks second on the PGA tour in SG:ARG behind just Fabian Gomez. His ball-striking is a concern, but on a course that plays this difficult for everybody, I’m willing to take a chance and include him in a few of my 20-max GPPs.

Thomas Pieters (DK $6,800) – On the other end of the spectrum, we have a Belgian EURO golfer who strikes the ball well and is long enough off the tee to contend on this course. There’s not a lot of PGA Tour data, but his ranks put him among the Top 65 in plenty of key categories, and his form is decent. Before his missed cut at the Byron Nelson, he posted four straight Top 15s in tournaments here and abroad.

More value golfers to consider: Gary Woodland (GPP), Lee Westwood, Matt Wallace, Brian Harman, Garrick Higgo, Max Homa (GPP), Matt Jones, Cameron Tringale, Rickie Fowler (GPP), Chris Kirk, Talor Gooch (GPP), Thomas Detry

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

Dean Burmester (DK $6,300) –I love the form (Win-T4-T6 in his last three EURO events), and while he’s a huge risk playing inside the United States, where he’s only played two majors – both U.S. Opens (T56-MC). I won’t go into too much detail about the South African because I don’t have a lot – but in this price range I’m willing to use him a bit and hope he sneaks into the weekend and gets on a decent run.

J.T. Poston (DK $6,100) – There’s not a lot of golfers to seriously consider in this price range, but Poston’s putter (fourth on tour in SG:P) and distance off the tee (300+) gets him into the conversation. He doesn’t three-putt too much and while his ball-striking is a concern, once in a while he shines. For this price in GPPs, he can’t hurt you too much if you keep him under 10%.

Additional GPP punts: Brendan Steele (GPP), Tom Lewis, Lanto Griffin, Erik van Rooyen, Harry Higgs, Andy Sullivan

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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!

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Decent top-end in a full field of 156 golfers, but not an elite group
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 65 and ties play the weekend
  • Canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19
  • 2019 (and 2018) champion: Paul Casey (-8 in ’19; -10 in ’18)
  • The course: Copperhead Course at Innisbrook Resort (Palm Harbour, FL)
    • Par 71: 7,340 yards
    • Bermuda greens
    • Tough track that played easier before 2015 renovations and a 2007 date change
    • Five par 3s, four par 5s
    • Tight fairways, water in play on 11 of 18 holes
    • Solid tee-to-green golf a must
    • AVOID THE SNAKE PIT (Holes 16-18 can bit you… and poison a victory with a multi-stroke swing come Sunday)
  • Some Friday afternoon wind will bump up (10-14 MPH) but weather looks great in the low 80s with no rain forecasted
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, SG: T2G, Par 3s Gained: 200-225, SG: Short Game, Par 4s Gained: 400-450, Good Drives Gained

The Picks:

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

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)

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

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)

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

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)

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

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

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In this PGA DFS picks column, we’re looking for all the right team at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and helping you navigate this team event!

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Solid field of 160 golfers (80 teams)
  • Eight players out of the world top 20 teeing it up this week
  • Only one teammate per team is allowed on your DK lineup
  • 36-hole Cut: Top 35 teams and ties play the weekend
  • 2019 champion: Jon Rahm/Ryan Palmer
  • The course: TPC Louisiana (Pete Dye design)
    • Par 72: 7,425 yards
    • Small TifEagle Bermuda greens
    • Iron play again an emphasis at these tough par 4s
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, SG: Putting (Bermuda, Opportunities Gained, Birdie or Better %, SG: OTT

The Picks:

Elite PGA DFS (DK $11,000 and up):

Xander Schauffele/Patrick Cantlay (DK $11,700) – I doubt these golfers will find much trouble off the tee and they look like the best combo of ball-striking and ability to capitalize on opportunities. Cantlay hasn’t played well recently, but in a team event, it’s easy to throw that out and look at the fact that both of these players are in the OWGR Top 10, and have the most combined talent in the field.

John Rahm/Ryan Palmer (DK $11,700) – They mastered this format last year, and Ryan Palmer lines up as a good proximity golfer from outside 200 yards (he ranks fourth on the PGA Tour). Combine their past success with Rahm’s overall talent and ability and you could have another winning combo in New Orleans. They’re a solid play in all formats.

Marc Leishman/Cameron Smith (DK $11,100) – These two were President’s Cup teammates and they both play the same ball – which is a bonus when they get to alternate stroke team play. Smith has shown an affinity for Pete Dye course and ranks fifth in the field for SG:APP at TPC Louisiana, where he was a part of the winning team in 2017 alongside Jonas Blixt. There should be plenty of scoring opportunities every day for this team, which has a shot at winning.

Also consider: Collin Morikawa/Matthew Wolff (GPP)

Mid-Range PGA DFS (DK $9,500 to $10,900):

Scottie Scheffler/Bubba Watson (DK $10,900) – I have no doubts about the team chemistry with these two birdie-makers, and while Watson has struggled in recent weeks, he’s a team player who seems to be more at ease when he’s outside his head. Scheffler’s ability to provide ample scoring opportunities will be a welcome sight for Bubba.

Tyrrell Hatton/Danny Willett (DK $10,300) – The English pair complement each other’s games quite well, with Hatton’s ball-striking and Willett’s putting possibly providing a winning combination of skill sets. I may not be overweight on the field if they get popular, but I’ll have shares.

Chris Kirk/Brendan Todd (DK $10,100) – A team that might end up making my single entry GPP lineups, Kirk/Todd (we can call them the UGA connection as former Georgia Bulldogs) should make the cut and give us some possible upside if they can get hot with the putters. They’ll be in play on these holes and we know Todd likes the small Bermuda greens and these types of “short-game forward” setups.

Max Homa/Talor Gooch (DK $9,900) – Both players can make birdies in bunches and that’s a good thing in team play. It’ll be easier to avoid big numbers that plague these golfers occasionally, and the sub-$10K tag is alluring in such a tight pricing format. The team fares well in combined models and I’ll have plenty of shares in GPPs.

Victor Hovland/Kristoffer Ventura (DK $9,700) – They played together at Oklahoma State and a quick review of the metrics indicates another complementary pairing here. Hovland ranks at or near the top of the field in SG:OTT, Opps Gained and BoB%, while Ventura is one of the better putters on tour, ranking well overall and on Bermuda. This could be a sneaky team.

Also consider: Tony Finau/Cameron Champ, Billy Horschel/Sam Burns

Value PGA DFS (DK $8,000 to $9,400):

Brendan Steele/Keegan Bradley (DK $9,300) – Steele is the better putter and longer driver, and Bradley the better ball-striker, and Steele had a Top 10 at this event in 2018. It’s not an exciting team, but one that might be lingering come Sunday and make a run at a Top 5.

Thomas Pieters/Tom Lewis (DK $9,200) –Another EURO connection that combines experience and form (Pieters) with birdie-making and motivation (Lewis). Lewis wants his PGA Tour card and Pieters is motivated in his own right – looking for a spot on the Ryder Cup team. Sia had them in his initial picks and I’m firmly aboard this pairing as well.

Lucas Glover/Chez Reavie (DK $8,800) – I’m most worried about this group’s putting statistics, which lag far behind the ball-striking metrics, but that tends to get mitigated a bit in team events, when two heads are usually better than one of reading putts and bouncing back from the bad holes.

Jason Kokrak/Pat Perez (DK $8,300) – Both of these golfers are PGA Tour “nice guys” who have had mixed results in 2020-21, with Perez hitting a bit of a plateau and Kokrak breaking through with his first PGA Tour win in October. If DK gave out points for good vibes, they’d be priced even higher, but I’m loving the discount in the value range.

Cameron Tringale/Roberto Castro (DK $8,000) – Tringale, who’s had a solid 2020-21 season, is third on my model and while Roberto Castro struggles with consistent play, he’s No. 18 in the field for SG:APP at this golf course. I’m liking the price and upside, but it’s risky in single-entry GPP.

More value golfers to consider: Louis Oosthuizen/Charl Schwartzel, Erik van Rooyen/Wyndham Clark, Kevin Kisner/Scott Brown, Doug Ghim/Justin Suh

Longshot Punts PGA DFS (DK $7,900 and under):

Matthew NeSmith/Chase Seiffert (DK $7,500) – This team will be very chalky, and they seem to be mispriced considering the talent level. They’re on a bit of a pricing island and seem to be one of the only exciting options between $7-8K.

Richy Werenski/Peter Uihlein (DK $7,100) – I’m glad that Joel brought these two (and Michael Thompson/Will Gordon) up in the Breakdown. Both teams caught my eye looking for cheap options that have upside, and I like the ability of Werenski/Uihlein to make a bunch of birdies in best ball and outperform their affordable salary.

Scott Piercy/Ashkay Bhatia (DK $6,900) – It’s kind of an off-the-wall play considering the differing general makeup of these two golfers, but they could surprise some folks in the first couple of days, when they seem to play their best golf. The opportunities should be there, and Piercy won with Horschel in 2018, so they’re worth a look in GPPs.

Bo Hoag/Wes Roach (DK $6,300) – It’s a dart throw for sure,because neither of these players is known for their consistency, but Hoag projects well for this golf course on the mixed model (No. 36 overall)  and Roach ranks No. 22 in the field for SG:APP at TPC Louisiana.

Additional GPP punts: Michael Thompson/Will Gordon (GPP), Sepp Straka/Josh Teator, Tom Hoge/Beau Hossler (GPP), Roger Sloan/Aaron Baddeley, James Hahn/Martin Trainer

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Our comprehensive PGA DFS picks returns for the Honda Classic at PGA National to help find you some great picks and winning teams this week.

Course Notes:

  • Weaker field of 150 golfers (only three of OWGR top 20 playing)
  • Cut: Top 65 and ties after 36 holes
  • 2020 winner: Sungjae Im (-6) over Mackenzie Hughes (-5)
  • The course: PGA National (Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, FL; Tom Fazio design)
    • Par 71 (7,125 yards)
    • Water everywhere (again) – in play on 15 holes; just two Par 5 holes
    • Scoring is tough, so course management and making pars important
    • Larger, more receptive Bermudagrass greens
    • Wind will blow hard on Thursday, keep any eye on tee times
    • Correlative courses include TPC Sawgrass & Scottsdale, Quail Hollow
  • Already a bunch of WDs including: Doc Redman (positive COVID test) and Scott Piercy (contact tracing), Gary Woodland (contact tracing), Sam Burns (undisclosed)
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, Bogey Avoidance, SG: Putting (Bermuda), SG: Off the Tee, SG: Around the Green, Par 4 scoring,

The Picks:

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

Sungjae Im (DK $11,000) – Since his T5 at the Sentry Tournament of Champions – a no-cut event – Im hasn’t placed better than T12 at the AMEX, though he’s made every cut and hasn’t necessarily hurt you. This week, he’s the top-priced golfer in a thin field and the defending champion — but he’s probably not the best option in cash games if you’re trying to build a balanced lineup. I won’t be overweight on the field, but I’ll have a few shares in GPPs based strictly on his ability to avoid bogeys and get off the tee well. The SG:APP and SG:ARG numbers don’t give me enough confidence to go all-in, even with the shortage of “elite talent in the top tier.

Daniel Berger (DK $10,800) – On Monday, Berger was the betting favorite and recently cited a rib injury following his T9 performance at the Players. He’s supposed to do a pre-tourney press conference, so we should have a better idea of how the ribs are feeling the day before lock. For now, I’m downgrading him slightly; he actually said he was surprised he played four full rounds dealing with the issue. Joel, Michael and Sia discussed Berger on the breakdown, but the fact that he played through the injury last week – and he’s second overall on my model – makes me want to use him in GPPs if he’s good to go. Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Berger has withdrawn from the Honda Classic and has been replaced by Rhein Gibson. Get him out of all your lineups and pivot to Niemann, Westwood or value. Incidentally, because the winds are going to blow so hard this week, it’s not a bad idea to leave some money on the table in a few lineups in large-field GPPs — since we could see the winning lineup not include any of the players over $9,500, and sneak a couple of serious value plays in the top 5.

Joaquin Niemann DK $10,400) – Our process of elimination is being aided by some early WDs and glaring red flags with a few of the other “elite” golfers this week, so forgive me for arriving at Joaquin Niemann chalk and feeling a bit uninspired. He’s viable in all formats, he’s sixth overall on my model and he’s 11/11 on cuts since the start of October. So what’s the downside? We’ll have to keep an eye on ownership for our GPP exposure, but I’m starting to feel like he’s one of the safer plays on the board.

Russell Henley (DK $9,800) – Henley might be the best cash game play of the top group when price, course history and model are all considered, and I’ll have plenty of exposure in GPPs as well, as he’s No. 1 overall on my model and his ownership might be more depressed than it would have been had he made the cut last week and had a finish higher than T11 in his last eight starts. He’s continually improve his finish in this event since 2016, and he won here in 2014. Henley will be the starting point for about 30-40 percent of my GPPs, and he’s shaping up to be an anchor on my single-entry squad.

Also consider: Lee Westwood, Adam Scott (Cash)

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

Shane Lowry (DK $9,200) – If the wind starts blowing and folks are having a tough time making pars, I’m all the more interested in a guy like Lowry, who’s proven to be a trustworthy golfer even when conditions are dire. He’s in good form and his history at the Honda Classic (through three tries) yielded a T21 in his last go-round. The weaker field, the difficulty of the venue and his increased confidence both here and on correlative and other Florida courses is a combination for prospective success this week.

Cameron Tringale (DK $9,100) – Tringale actually described the Champion course at PGA national himself as a “second-shot golf course” that plays tough because of the wind, the run-offs and the myriad hazards that abound. Tringale has always been decent around the greens and has his most difficulty on correlative courses getting off the tee (he ranks 131st in the field in SG: OTT when adjusted for this course and the others mentioned in the bullets). While it feels weird playing over $9K for Tringale, but he’s No. 18 in my model and if he can keep it in the fairways here, he’ll be in good shape to contend on Sunday.

Chris Kirk (DK $9,000) – In his last two events, Kirk has waited until day 4 to shoot his worst round of the tournament, which may not bode well for his confidence heading into a difficult PGA National course. If he’s anywhere near 15% or more in GPPs, I’ll steer clear, but you have to consider a guy whose ball striking has been this good lately. He’s No. 15 in my model overall and the only thing that’s really held him back form better finishes in his last few tourneys has been his putting.

Brendan Steele (DK $8,700) – This tour grinder has made seven consecutive cuts heading into the Honda this week. Aside from a MC in 2019, Steele’s course history is more than solid (8-for-9 with top 15s in four of last five; 36-hole leader before a T4 last year), and he’s popping (fourth overall) on my model this week. I’m already leaning his way in single-entry and could have big shares across the board in all formats. As a bonus, we’ve seen Steele navigate high winds well before, and Sia likes him this week too, so there are two more reasons to keep him in our builds.

Matt Wallace (DK $8,500) – Wallace is another player who plays well in these types of conditions, and he has one of those names that Sia really likes for its simplicity and understated, boring inflection. Because it doesn’t stand out like Wallace himself, we could see ownership lower than what it should be this week. For that reason, and the important detail that he’s a longshot who just barely missed the cut here last year, we don’t need high ownership to stay ahead of the field. He’s definitely getting mixed into my GPPs (20-max), but I won’t have more than 10 percent shares.

Also consider: Talor Gooch, Rickie Fowler (GPP), Keegan Bradley (GPP), Martin Kaymer, Ian Poulter, Wyndham Clark (GPP), Byeong Hun An, Russell Knox, Erik van Rooyen

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

K.H. Lee (DK $7,500) – Lee missed the cut at Bay Hill and finished a ho-hum T41 last week at the Players, but I’m intrigued by the correlation between success here and at TPC Scottsdale – where he finished T2 in February. The South Korean sensation is adept at avoiding bogeys and is 25th overall in my model this week – making him a solid value play. Because of the wind, I’m looking at tee times and favoring the early Thursday times a bit, so Lee takes a bit of a hit because of that, but I’m still interested.

Luke List (DK $7,500) – He’s let me down a few times with missed cuts, but he can really get off the tee well and that usually bodes well for success at this event, where he finished solo second (between winner JT and Alex Noren) in 2018. Add to that course history another Top 10 and a couple missed cuts and underwhelming performances, and you’ve got a golfer to use in GPPs and stay a bit ahead of the field in ownership.

James Hahn (DK $7,300) – Hahn hasn’t played the Honda Classic in a while, but he’s tied with Lee Westwood for eighth overall in my model, he’s sprinkled three Top 15s in his last 10 tournaments, and his solo 10th place finish at the TPC course Waste Management gives me some confidence in his ability to do well here at this correlated PGA course in South Florida. He’ll be low-owned and makes for a prime target in GPPs.

Ryan Moore (DK $7,300) – Moore has played here just once, but he made the cut, and he’s finished in the Top 35 in his last two tournaments after three straight MCs to start out 2021. He’s No. 14 overall on my model this week and he’s been playing steady enough golf to spike a Top 10 or 15 finish here, which works for me in all formats.

Chez Reavie (DK $7,000) – His proximity stats are second in the field (Vaughn Taylor is actually first and Russell Henley is third), and he’s been off a bit this year with a bunch of missed cuts mixed with a few decent performances. His putting and ARG numbers have bene bad, but if he can find a little magic on the short stuff, he could pay off handsomely in GPPs.

Lucas Glover (DK $7,000) – I really like Glover this week in GPPs given his extensive course history, but I’ve been known to go a little overboard because of the upside he offers at such a cheap price point. He hasn’t had a top 10 finish since the Mayakoba, but there have bene some bright spots, including a 63 in round two of the Waste Management Open and some steady golf last week (in rounds 2-4) despite difficult conditions. His ability to avoid the big number could come in handy this week.

Jim Furyk (DK $6,900) – Full disclosure: I’ll probably have Furyk on way too many teams this week given the venue, the fact that he’s fifth in my model (and #1 in the field in Bogey Avoidance), and the crucial factor that less-than-driver is plenty on a lot of these Par 4s. The veteran golfer (and shoo-in 2021 HOFer) is one of the best ball strikers the game has ever known, and he’s still got it going at over 50 years of age.

Chesson Hadley (DK $6,600) – Hadley (No. 20 overall on my model) typically struggles around the greens, but he likes this putting surface and if he can avoid some of the testy run-offs and navigate the ball well T2G, I think he could be in play in GPPs. He’s in the price range where you don’t need to go overboard or even use him in single-entry, but I’m fine with 10-15% ownership in GPPs if you want some extra leverage for a high-upside guy with two Top 25s at this event.

More value golfers to consider: Patton Kizzire (GPP), Zach Johnson, Henrik Norlander (GPP), Jhonattan Vegas (GPP), Harry Higgs (GPP), Adam Long, Mark Hubbard, Denny McCarthy, John Huh (GPP), Wes Bryan, Charl Schwartzel, Jason Dufner

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

Pat Perez (DK $6,500) – It’s easy to root for Perez, who’s No. 10 on my overall model this week but missed the cut last week after 77-69 in the opening two rounds. I’m focused on the 69 – especially since the last two times he missed the cut he bounced back with a finish in the top 36. That’s not a bad trend for a golfer in this price range, and a guy who doesn’t make a lot of big numbers and has the game to put together some low rounds.

Kramer Hickok (DK $6,400) – He performed well in high winds at the Bermuda, and he made the cut last week at the Players after getting in as an alternate with Brooks Koepka’s withdrawal. He’s No. 59 overall on my model, but he’s got some Top 25 upside this week if you need a cheap golfer to mix into 1-2 of your 20max GPPs.

UPDATE: Kramer Hickok has withdrawn his name from the field, and will be replaced by Brandon Hagy, who I have no interest in. Hickok did not cite a reason for his WD.

Kelly Kraft (DK $6,000) – Normally I don’t include players this far down in my model (he’s No. 124 this week), but Kraft finished T8 here in 2018 and he’s known for being a better player in high winds, which could come into play right off the bat this week. He’s a 1/20 max play, but he’s minimum salary and if your five golfers in a GPP build gets you there and you need a guy that’s $6K, I’d pick Kraft.

Additional punts: Stewart Cink, Vaughn Taylor (GPP), Scott Stallings, Sam Ryder, Graeme McDowell, Tyler Duncan (GPP), Chase Seifert (GPP)

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We’re loading up another PGA DFS picks column to tackle TPC Sawgrass at the Players Championship and finding you some winning golfers this week.

PGA DFS Course Notes:

  • Enormous, elite field of 154 golfers
  • Cut: Top 65 and ties after 36 holes
  • No 2020 winner due to COVID: 2019 winner was Rory McIlroy (-16)
  • The course: TPC Sawgrass (Ponte Vedra, FL – Pete Dye design
    • Par 72 (7,189 yards)
    • Water everywhere on this difficult, risk-reward golf course
    • Plays longer in March than it did in May
    • Bermuda turf overseeded with ryegrass; dormant, speedy Bermuda greens overseeded with velvet bent and poa trivialis
    • Look for big scoring spreads like at Bay Hill
    • Wind probably won’t blow like it did at Bay Hill
  • 6/6 will be tougher this week in the huge field
  • Focus Stat Categories: Strokes Gained: Approach, SG: Off the Tee, SG: Around the Green, Par 4 scoring, SG: Putting (Bermuda), Opportunities Gained, Bogey Avoidance

The Picks:

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

Dustin Johnson (DK $11,200) – Joel and Sia did a great job explaining how there’s a lot of different ways to approach your build this week in the breakdown, and there’s not really one right answer. But if I’m entering 10 GPP lineups, I’ll probably start with DJ and one of the $9K guys, be it JT, Webb, Morikawa or Cantlay. It’s a great spot to get some leverage by using the guy I think is most talented golfer in the field at twice (or more) the projected ownership. He’s talked about how he likes this venue in March more than May, and he’s No. 1 in my model by a long shot. He’ll be the anchor of my single-entry lineups and there’s really no good reason to fade him.

Rory McIlroy (DK $10,600) – Rory continues to struggle with closing out tournaments, and the fact that he’s technically the defending champ here doesn’t inspire additional confidence on a golf course that’s given him problems in the past. The risk-reward nature of TPC Sawgrass and its reputation as the “fifth major” lends more similarity to the Masters and Augusta National more than any of the other majors, and McIlroy has yet to “master” what it takes to win among the azaleas. He could easily play solid golf and score another top ten, but I won’t be overweight on Rory this week.

Justin Thomas (DK $9,900) – This is probably the week where I take my biggest stand on JT, because there’s a little bit of a discount and because I can’t imagine the field going too heavy on ownership on a player who’s missed two of his last four cuts. But there’s plenty to like about some of the things we’ve seen Thomas do in his recent rounds, and my model reflects it as he’s No. 3 on my list. The opportunities have been there and it’s exactly the kind of venue where JT could post a couple really low scores and find himself at the top of the leaderboard after two or three rounds.

Webb Simpson (DK $9,500) – Webb is probably the best way to start building in cash games and he’s a candidate for single-entry anchor because of how well he’s played TPC Sawgrass over the past three attempts. He’s fifth on my overall model and he ranks second in the field (over his past 36 rounds) in SG:APP on correlative courses (including Bay Hill, Augusta National, TPC Boston, Shesan International and Quail Hollow). There’s no clear weakness to his game – he ranks 60th or better in every focus stat metric that matters this week – and the price is excellent.

Also consider: Jon Rahm, Xander Schauffele, Bryson DeChambeau (GPP)

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

Colin Morikawa (DK $9,400) – We don’t necessarily have to look to Morikawa this week, because the official records don’t indicate any course history here, but a little digging shows us that he started off last year’s event quite well (-4) in a bizarre first-round environment that saw no fans allowed on the grounds before the tournament was canceled amid the creeping horror of the pandemic. He’s an incredible ball striker and he’s made strides in his short game, but I’m leaning toward more shares of the next two guys on this list for the comparative discount.

Patrick Cantlay (DK $9,200) – Cantlay is an incredible golfer from tee-to-green and he’s in the top 15 of my model. He’s yet to really break through at the Players but he has a couple of Top 25 finishes and his last six tournaments haven’t yielded a finish worse than T17, performances that included a win at the ZOZO, a solo second at the AMEX, and a T3 at Pebble Beach. The biggest knock is the fact that he withdrew from the WGC-Workday with an illness/dehydration, but that could have just been a stomach bug that really left him in the dumps – pun intended.

Tony Finau ($9,100) – Like DJ, there’s no discernible reason to exclude Finau from your lineups this week, especially at such an affordable price. My biggest concern is his SG:ARG on correlative courses, but with the overseeding of these Bermudagrass greens, we’re going to see the surfaces a little more speedy – just how he likes them. The scoring opportunities for Finau (No. 10 overall on my model and No. 9 in the field for Opps Gained) should be there this week and I’m definitely going to be overweight on the field.

Hideki Matsuyama (DK $8,700) – If you clicked the link about last year’s first round scores, Hideki fired a nine-under par 63 and tied the course record in the doomed 2020 event, and the ball-striking sensation seems to like how the greens roll here in March, as he finished T8 here in 2019 when they made the switch. Even if he struggles with his putter a bit, the T2G game should carry him through and get his name in the mix on Sunday.

Paul Casey (DK $8,400) – Casey is a feast-or-famine GPP play who’s had a mixed bag of results at the Players, but he’s a good fit in this price range and he’s been striking the ball extremely well en route to some international success at Dubai, where he won, and locally at Bay Hill last week, when he finished T10. His T2G numbers on Pete Dye courses are solid, and he’s got the chops and nerves of steel to win at TPC Sawgrass.

Adam Scott (DK $8,100) – Scott makes more sense for cash than GPPs, as he sports a more-than-decent course history here and has been making cuts lately – but has just one top 10 finish (T10 at the Farmers) since the U.S. Open in September 2020. He’s usable in tournaments as a last piece, but he’s not very exciting and not part of my GPP core.

Tommy Fleetwood (DK $7,900) – Sia’s betting the farm on Fleetwood notching the low score of day one at an enticing 66-1, and that’s a really amazing price for a golfer as talented as Fairway Jesus – who’s been striking the ball quite well as of late. He’s got plenty of upside and seems to play his best in big events – and the Players qualifies. A top 10 finish wouldn’t surprise me.

Cameron Smith (DK $7,900) – This is a tough call for GPPs, because game log watchers will see his recent finishes and be inspired, while course history hounds might get scared off by the missed cuts in 2017 and 2018. But the switch to March yielded a better result (he made the cut) in 2019, so I’m willing to throw out the previous struggles and focus more on the form and his attractive No. 34 spot in my mixed model.

Will Zalatoris (DK $7,600) – Another talented golfer who saves his best golf for tough tracks and strong fields, Zalatoris is getting his first crack at TPC Sawgrass but seems to have a game that translates to any venue. He’s solid off the tee, he doesn’t make big numbers, and he’s a fine large-field GPP or single-entry tourney play at this price.

Also consider: Viktor Hovland (GPP), Scottie Scheffler (GPP), Daniel Berger, Jordan Spieth, Tyrrell Hatton (GPP), Matthew Fitzpatrick, Jason Day, Louis Oosthuizen (GPP), Jason Kokrak, Joaquin Niemann

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

Abraham Ancer (DK $7,500) – We can thank the soft pricing for Ancer making the value range at just $7,500 this week, and while he doesn’t spike a top 10 rank in any one key metric heading into the Players, he’s a top-notch ball striker who finished T12 (right alongside Rahm and Joel Dahmen) at this event in 2019. I’ll be ahead of the field in GPPs at hopefully around 20-25% in my 20-max, and he’s on the short list for consideration in SE.

Russell Henley (DK $7,400) – Henley is my “off-the-wall, model-loves-him” GPP play this week, because he’s had a pretty rough go of it in his last four tries here. A little more course history research shows a T24 and T17 in 2015 and 2014, so there’s some room for optimism. It makes sense that when the course played a little faster tee-to-green, he had more success, especially when you consider his less-than-stellar SG:OTT numbers. But Henley usually avoids the big numbers, hit great approaches and has a decent-enough short game to compete with the best, so I’m mixing him into my GPP builds.

Lanto Griffin (DK $7,300) – Griffin appears to be taking the next step forward in his career as he gains more confidence, and since his MC at the AMEX he’s posted four straight finishes of T26 or better, including a T21 at the API last week. It’s not a course where too many golfers play “lights-out” in their inaugural run, but he’s going to make a few of my GPP lineups.

Cameron Tringale (DK $7,200) – Tringale hasn’t played here since 2017, but he’s made the cut in three of his last four tries and has a T35 and T16 in his last two runs at Sawgrass. He and Chris Kirk (No. 9 overall) are the only $7K golfers in the top 10 of my model this week, and Tringale’s ranking at No. 7 is largely a result of a solid short game, a high rank in bogey avoidance and SG:APP on correlative courses. He’s worth a look.

Christian Bezuidenhout (DK $7,100) – He wasn’t on my initial list, but the more I dig into his recent form (T7 at the API) and the revelation that he was -7 in last year’s first round. The dude can putt like a demon and he’s solid around the green, so if he can keep it in the fairways (and there’s a lot of less-than-driver here so that should help his chances), there’s no reason he can’t find a Top 10. He’s probably going to be on my single-entry teams and I’ll be close to 40 percent in large-field GPPs.

Chris Kirk (DK $7,000) – The other of my $7K model darlings, Kirk makes for fine value in any format and his biggest weakness (putting) becomes a veritable strength on fast surfaces, which TPC Sawgrass should provide this week. He might be popular, as he’s projected around 11-12% right now, but I’ll have shares close to or exceeding that in GPPs.

Emiliano Grillo (DK $6,700) – Grillo is the best ball striker you’ll ever see under $7K and his reputation of having a poor short game is probably the reason he’s not projected over 10% ownership this week. I like his chances of making the cut (3-for-his-last-4 at the Players with a T11 in 2017) and he’s played well in three of his last four events (T21-T11-MC-T22), and the missed cut at the Genesis was the result of a 72-73 opening two rounds, which isn’t that horrendous.

More value golfers to consider: Sergio Garcia, Marc Leishman (GPP), Corey Conners, Sam Burns, Ryan Palmer, Kevin Kisner (GPP), Cameron Davis (GPP), Keegan Bradley, Alex Noren, Harold Varner III, Mackenzie Hughes

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

Richy Werenski (DK $6,400) – The main reason I’m considering Werenski is his immediate form, as he finished T4 last week at Bay Hill, and while normally in a field this size and strength I’d be scared of the golfers under $6,500, we’ve got a few high-upside guys this week. He’s not great off the tee, but as we discussed, that could be mitigated (like last week) with more “less-than-driver” than usual.

Doug Ghim (DK $6,200) – Ghim could blow up and make a couple of double-bogeys in his first four holes, but he’s also capable of firing a 65 on day one and putting himself in decent position for making the cut and posting a top 25 finish. It’s hard to recommend using him at more than 10 percent, but at that rate you’ll be around 2x the field ownership.

Jason Dufner (DK $6,100) – Dufner has a major championship under his belt and while that was a long time ago, he’s made four cuts in a row at the Players including a T5 in 2018, and he’s better-than-average on tougher courses with his ball-striking and prefers fast greens. Don’t go overboard, but he’s fine to grab in 1/20 since nobody will be on him.

Additional punts: Nick Taylor, Rory Sabbatini, Jhonattan Vegas, Harry Higgs (GPP)

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    At WIN DAILY®, our motto is to “change your game and change your life.” We want to help you win that bet, parlay, and big DFS tournament and have some fun while you do. Our goal is to help you turn your love of sports into a profit center while playing responsibly and enjoying your time with a like-minded community.

    ©2024 WIN DAILY®. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

    This site is 100% for entertainment purposes only and does not involve real money betting. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and wants help, call 1-800 GAMBLER. This service is intended for adult users only.
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