Gary Woodland

The start of the Florida swing is next on the schedule for the PGA TOUR traveling to Palm Beach for The Honda Classic played on the Champion course at PGA National. The course will play as a par 70, measuring 7,125 yards and move back to Bermuda greens this week.

PGA National has played host to the Honda since 2007, but it has also has a rich history with hosting tournaments like the 1983 Ryder Cup and the 1987 PGA Championship. Last year’s winner, Keith Mitchell, went on to win his first and only tournament on TOUR, but other players like Brooks Koepka, Tommy Fleetwood, Justin Rose and Gary Woodland are making their way to Palm Beach Gardens in search of their first win of the 2020 season along with their first win here. Past winners here include Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlory, Russell Henley, Padrig Harrington (twice) and Adam Scott.

PGA National has played very difficult in the past, ranking fourth in scoring relative to par last season and second in 2018. The easiest it has played was 17th in 2014 and has ranked inside the top 5 in scoring difficulty in seven out of the past 10 years, the only non-major to rank this high over the past decade. The greens have consistently played difficult, recording below 60% hit in regulation, close to 10% less than TOUR average, as well as the majority of approach shot distribution coming from 175 to 200 yards. Another reason the course plays tough comes from “The Bear Trap,” holes 15 through 17, which, per SHOT LINK data from the PGA TOUR, rank as the third-toughest stretch on TOUR of courses that have been played in at least 10 or more seasons since 2007 (non-majors). Water hazards will also come into play on 15 of the 18 holes.

DraftKings lineups should consist of golfers who are elite or trending positively in Strokes Gained: Approach-the-Green with winners gaining close to three times more in approach over the field compared to Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee. Golfers who come into this week playing well in on Par 4s should also be considered as is the case with all par 70s.

COULD TOMMY FLEETWOOD WIN THE HONDA CLASSIC?

Set your lineups here: PGA TOUR $555K Drive the Green [$100K to 1st]

Gary Woodland ($10,300)

Woodland hasn’t missed the cut here in his past six appearances and comes into the week gaining strokes through approach in 12 of his past 14 events dating back to March of last season. It looked like Woodland was going to make a run in Mexico after his 65 on Saturday, but he just couldn’t make any putts on Sunday, losing 1.6 strokes on the greens. His putting on Bermuda has been fantastic lately, ranking ninth in Strokes Gained: Putting over his past two tournaments and his ball-striking has been elite here, ranking fifth in Strokes Gained: Off-the-tee and second in Strokes Gained: Approach-the-green over his past three Honda Classics.


Billy Horschel ($9.200)

Horschel has been playing great with two top 10s in his past two events and now gets on a Par 70, a format he feels most comfortable ranking seventh in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green over his past three tournaments in the aforementioned layout. Horschel comes into The Honda Classic, ranking just outside the top 40 in Strokes Gained: Approach-the-green, but first in par 4 efficiency over the past three tournaments. Horschel should also perform well on the greens this week, ranking 10th in Strokes Gained: Putting over the past 50 rounds on fast Bermuda greens.


Sam Burns ($7,100)

Burns has now gained strokes with his ball-striking in his past four straight tournaments and over the two tournaments he’s played here has gained a total of 6.3 strokes through approach and just under eight strokes putting. Burns also ranks fourth in par 4 efficiency over the past 12 rounds and not only has a top 10 this season, but he also a top 10 here in 2018.


Chesson Hadley ($6,800)

The missed cut in Puerto Rico could be an outlier with Hadley, who gained strokes through ball-striking in seven of his past eight tournaments. Hopefully, he left Puerto Rico feeling a little better shooting a two-under on Friday and should be more comfortable on a course where he’s played well, finishing with a top 20 and two top 25s in three of his past five events here. Hadley could be in line for a good week with a strong mix of course form along with the way he’s hitting his irons, ranking 12th in Strokes Gained: Approach-the-Green over his last 24 rounds.


Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.


I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is reidtfowler) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.