Reading the Grain: Dell Technologies Championship

It’s going to be tough for this week’s event to top the fireworks that The Northern Trust provided, but this field has the potential to do just that. The Dell Technologies Championship will be played from Friday through Monday at TPC Boston. TPC Boston is a par 71 that plays a shade under 7,300 yards.

The move from Glen Oaks Club to TPC Boston means that the golfers get one extra scoring opportunity this week. In the past five years, golfers have been able to take advantage here. TPC Boston has only been in the top-20 most difficult courses on the PGA Tour once in that time frame. Going back further, since 2003, the winning score has been anywhere from -14 to -22. Last year, there wasn’t a single hole that finished in the top-250 most difficult holes overall. In fact, 10 holes played under par here in 2016.

Going With The Grain

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  • Driving Distance
  • Scrambling
  • Strokes Gained: Around the Green
  • Par 5 Birdie or Better

Dustin Johnson ($12,000) delivered the Drive Heard ‘Round the World last week as he won the Northern Trust in a playoff over Jordan Spieth ($12,100). Quite simply, DJ has everything you’re looking for as we head into the Dell this week. His last four starts have resulted in nothing worse than a tie for 17th place. In addition to his recent form, Johnson has two top-10 finishes here in his last four starts. The moral is you’ll likely want to find a way to get some shares of him this week.

PGA Champion Justin Thomas ($10,300) is somehow flying a bit under the radar this week. He’s had mixed results here in the past with a missed cut and a T56 in his only two starts here, but he’s been playing well of late. He followed up his win at Quail Hollow with a T6 finish last week. It’s no secret that Justin Thomas can score, but his numbers have been elite this year. I’ll take the guy that has the best chance at eagles on a relatively easy course.

Stat2017 Rank
Eagles (Holes Per)1st
Birdie Average2nd
Scoring Average6th

Kevin Chappell ($8,600) being a great play is no secret this week. Chappell has an excellent blend of course history and recent form. In the past four years, Chapell has finished inside the top-25 three times. In his past four starts this year, he has finished no worse than T33 with three top-15 finishes. Chappell is also top-35 in Strokes Gained: Approach and Around The Green despite his lower ranking in Greens in Regulation and Scrambling.

Jhonattan Vegas ($7,000) seems to be part yo-yo recently. His past five results are below, and they have been mixed. Vegas will likely see his share of ownership this week, and it is warranted. His distance was on full display, and he was 27th in Distance of Putts Made last week. If Vegas is rolling it pure on the greens, he can be a factor here.

EventFinishing Position
The Northern Trust3rd
PGA ChampionshipMissed Cut
WGC - Bridgestone Invitational17th
RBC Canadian Open1st

Honorable Mention – Jamie Lovemark ($7,100) & Luke List ($6,900)


Going Against The Grain

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  • Driving Accuracy
  • Greens in Regulation
  • Strokes Gained: Approach
  • Par 3 Birdie or Better

Jordan Spieth ($12,100) stumbled down the stretch at the Northern Trust but still comes in as the most expensive golfer this week. Spieth hasn’t missed a cut since before Memorial Day and has two runner up finishes to go along with his two victories in that span. We know he isn’t the most accurate golfer on tour, but he is 35th in Distance from the Edge of the Fairway. We know he doesn’t have much distance to speak of either. Yet, somehow, he is sixth in Par 5 Birdie or Better. Don’t overthink it, include Spieth in some lineups this week.

Matt Kuchar ($8,800) continues to grind out top finishes in 2017. He has eight top-20 finishes in his 10 most recent starts. Kuchar is also 5-of-5 at this event with two top-10 finishes. File Adam Scott ($7,900) in the underappreciated category also. He wasn’t terribly impressive at Quail Hollow, but he had three straight top-35 finishes leading into that week. Scott is ninth in my Against the Grain course fit but gets a huge bump thanks to his current price.

Webb Simpson ($8,200) has averaged 3.4 Strokes Gained: Total in his career but is averaging 8.6 strokes over his last five events, according to Fantasy National. He has a top-10 to his credit at this tournament a few years ago. Simpson doesn’t fit the distance angle obviously, but his accuracy and Strokes Gained: Approach make him a strong Against The Grain play this week.

Honorable Mention – Ryan Moore ($7,700) & Russell Knox ($7,100)

 


I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is matt13jones) 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.