The PGA season continues to barrel forward like a runaway train as we are now finished with the third of four majors and roughly one month remains until the FedEx Cup Playoffs begin. We’ll really need to make the most of these final events in the season including this one, so below is a list of golfers I love, like, and hate for help when building lineups this week.
Golfers I Love
Dustin Johnson ($12,500) – I’m starting to feel a bit like a broken record here with Dustin Johnson, but he continues to be elite. With yet another top ten last week at Royal Troon, it’s now been almost two months since we’ve seen DJ finish outside the top ten. Expect his ownership to be very high, but I’m going to be asking myself if Dustin Johnson can realistically be faded, and at this time the answer feels like a strong no.
Matt Kuchar ($10,600) – While the price may seem a bit high for Kuchar, we are talking about a field that is weaker than usual and does not contain the same fire power that we’ve seen the last few weeks. Kuchar has been very good recently short of his underperformance in the two most recent majors. Kuchar has a tendency to underperform in majors and difficult fields, so I am going to overlook the recent under-performances and look for Kuchar to bounce back this week.
Tony Finau ($9,300) – Glen Abbey is a course that is very getable by players who have a tendency to make birdies regularly. However, historically most of the scoring has come from the par 5’s on the course. With Tony Finau being ranked 17th in par 5 scoring I think he certainly has what it takes to do some damage here this week.
Ryan Palmer ($8,000) – I can’t stress how much I love Ryan Palmer this week enough. If I could I’d write him up twice in the love section. He ranks third in Par 5 Scoring and sixteenth in Birdie or Better Percentage which will suit him well this week. At only $8,000 in salary, I think he is underpriced in comparison to the field and has the ability to do some serious damage this week.
Mark Wilson ($7,300) – You probably aren’t likely to hear Mark Wilson’s name mentioned much with his 405th world golf ranking. However, he jumps off the page in my statistical projection model and surprisingly he has made all four cuts in the years I’ll be using for course history. I won’t have too much Wilson, but I think he makes an interesting GPP flier.
Golfers I Like
Jason Day ($12,300) – I might as well just permanently place Day in my like section with DJ in my love section because Jason Day has just been too good as of late. While his twenty-second finish at The Open last week wasn’t anything to write home about, in a field as weak as this, it seems likely that the world number one ranked golfer will do some damage.
Jim Furyk ($9,900) – While Jim Furyk has not necessarily been shocking the world with his golf results he projects extremely well in my statistical model. Furyk does not necessarily fit the mold for a golfer who is going to play lights out on all the par 5’s this week; however, he has finished in the top ten here in 2015 and 2013 which is enough for me to trust his high projections and jump in on him.
Adam Hadwin ($8,700) – Hadwin seems a bit overpriced at $8,700, but I think this should serve us in that it will keep his ownership down. Hadwin is on his home turf in Canada this week and finished top ten last year at this same event. Despite his high price, I’ll be taking Hadwin in some lineups this week and hoping he can follow up last year’s performance with another top finish.
Harold Varner III ($7,800) – This is an extremely attractive price for this rookie golfer who is rapidly moving his name towards the top of the list for the season’s rookie of the year award with his three month run of made cuts. The only black mark on Varner’s resume is that he hasn’t won an event his year, and there are other rookies who have. That being said, I think this is one of Varner’s best shots to win in the final stretch of the season.
Chad Campbell ($6,800) – This is the first time that Chad Campbell has made his way into an article for me, and the more I dig into Campbell, the more I find myself wanting to roster him. He is certainly no young man at the age of 42; however, he ranks 22nd in Par 5 Scoring, 43rd in Scoring Average, and 30th in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-green which means he can play with the best of them. I’ll be taking Campbell as a value GPP play in a lot of my lineups.
Golfers I Hate
Brandt Snedeker ($10,300) – I’m a bit torn on Snedeker because he typically tends to play well in weak fields; however, this course does not scream Brandt Snedeker in the slightest. The tie breaker in my mind was the fact that Sneds has missed three cuts in six events and hasn’t finished inside the top seventeen in twelve weeks. With Snedeker’s increased price tag in a weak field, he is going to have to do better than he has been to find his way on winning lineups.
Danny Lee ($9,100) – I’ve been on Danny Lee a lot as of late, and it has really burned me in some spots. Obviously Danny Lee has some upside in an event that doesn’t have a lot of star power. However, he hasn’t shown the consistent upside I’m looking for in a golfer who is $9,100, and it feels to me like he’s overpriced despite being a weaker field.
Robert Garrigus ($8,300) – Garrigus makes my hate list for nearly one reason and one reason only – he’s not good enough to be priced at $8,300. This is your reminder that we are talking about the 287th ranked golfer in the world as the 30th and 40th ranked golfers at nearly the same price. Don’t overreact to Garrigus’ recent performances, and keep this reminder in the back of your mind if you consider rostering Garrigus.
Billy Hurley III $7,700 – Hurley is a golfer that I never seem to get right, but I think this is a week that it makes sense to fade Hurley. He is ranked 173rd in Birdie or Better Percentage and 167th in Par 5 Scoring which are two of the most important statistics I’m looking at for this course. That alone is enough for me to fade him, but he missed the cut by a mile opening with a round one 80 last year which doesn’t inspire confidence.
Hunter Mahan ($6,300) – You may recognize Mahan’s name, but don’t let that tempt you into taking too much of Hunter. Mahan lands outside the top 150 in nearly every stat I’m looking at this week including Birdie or Better Percentage, Par 5 Scoring, and Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green which is easily enough to overlook the fact that he may be at a discounted price.
Do you have questions about golfers who aren’t in this article? Get more weekly analysis and answers to any of your questions by following me on Twitter @BradMessersmith
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is IthinkIcan1) 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.