Preview: A couple things I’d like to say before I get started here. As expected, the pros are out there this week in Palm Beach Gardens and they are STRUGGLING. I am sitting here watching the 4 – 6 golfers that the Golf Channel feels like showing all day long (that’s a conversation for another day), while following these scores and the cut line that keeps on going down, down, down. “The Bear Trap” is living up to it’s name – the amount of balls I have watched get eaten by the wind and thrown straight into the water on the par 3 15th and the numbers going up on #15, #16, #17 is absurd. Don’t get me wrong – it sure is entertaining, but it can be quite tilting. During the 5 minutes since I’ve sat down to start writing this, Tiger dunked it in the water on #15 and JT just missed two sub 5-foot putts for a double on #16. With that said – I thought I’d recap — WAIT: Breaking news! Sergio comes up short into the water on #17. Anyway, HOLD UP – Breaking news! Daniel Berger also in the water on #17 (don’t worry I think he may be able to take his shoes off and hit it). For real this time – the reason I sat down and decided to start writing today is that I know there are a lot of people out there with sunken lineups wishing they had something to watch this weekend – lucky for all of us feeling that way, DraftKings offers some weekend PGA contests that put forth some very interesting pricing options that I think can be highly exploitable if we’re considering the right things here. I don’t usually throw too much money at weekend PGA because I’d like to compare it to playing that 2-game 10:30 EST NBA slate after your original lines took a turn for the worse – it doesn’t always work out well, but I think we have ourselves an exception here. Before I get distracted with any more breaking news or random thoughts popping into my head, I am going to go down this list and point out some of my favorite options for the weekend PGA contests on DK.
For anyone who doesn’t have “Weekend PGA DFS” experience – a couple notes. First, there are no bonuses given for finishing position or “Tournament Finishing Scoring” – so you won’t be getting +30 fantasy points for rostering the winning golfer, 20 fantasy points for the 2nd place golfer, etc. Weekend PGA contests are scored on “per hole scoring” and “streaks and bonuses” only. This puts all the golfers at an even playing field regardless of their position within the field. As we know, the lower scores in the field will be teeing off first tomorrow, and the leaders will be teeing off last. Right now, the weather forecast in Palm Beach Gardens is pretty uniform, with wind staying at a constant 10-15mph all weekend, and maybe some rain tomorrow, more toward the morning. With that said, early starters and late starters are both struggling here. So I am going to look at all players on the same level here.
Justin Thomas ($9,700): Aside from his little putting breakdown we just witnessed, JT has been playing very consistently. I love his long irons and his ability to keep it in play here. He is used to the weekend pressure and is going to keep himself in it. Fully on board with rostering him this weekend.
Rory McIlroy ($9,600): Rory stayed surprisingly consistent the past two days with the exception of his triple bogey 6 on the the infamous par-3 #17 today. I don’t love his price in comparison to some others but I do like that we haven’t seen any other large numbers from him. He’s a ball striker and he appears more comfortable on these greens as opposed to the past few weeks on the west coast.
Sergio Garcia ($9,400): I liked Sergio prior to Thursday and I am going to stay on him here. Another guy who has avoided major mistakes (again, with the exception of #17 like everyone else). I can see him making a push for the lead on moving day, and he’s a guy I’d love to have in my lineup if he’s in the mix going into Sunday (more so that Rory).
Tommy Fleetwood ($9,000): Yes. I am fully on Fleetwood here. He’s made a decent amount of birdies in the past two days and has completely avoided big trip ups, which as we know is huge out here. He’s priced below Sergio, Rory, JT and at this point, he has as much of a chance at taking this thing down as the others. Also, we need someone who is converting birdies, not just getting pars. At that is exactly what Fleetwood has been doing.
Mid-Range Options ($8,000 – $8,9000)
Alexander Noren ($8,800): I am staying away from him this weekend. Today’s round was sketchy and that’s not what I’d like to be watching this weekend. The front 9 here is considered the easier of the two, and his first 9-holes today were not the prettiest. With the other names that seem to be hanging in there, I’d rather invest elsewhere.
Daniel Berger ($8,400): The only thing that is tempting to me here is the price. But after watching him today, he is just having too much trouble controlling his ball flight off the tee and into the wind – that could be very troubling this weekend. I’ll again be looking elsewhere.
Webb Simpson ($8,300): Yes – as I stated all week, I love Webb Simpson’s games at touchy courses like this one. He may not be getting 5+ birdies or anything like that, but I trust that he’ll keep himself in the game and give you some solid scores to work with. And his price definitely helps the cause here.
Russell Henley ($7,800): Although I’m not usually a big fan of rostering Henley, I think he’s showed us what he’s capable of over the past two days. He has an eagle and five birdies on Thursday, and four more birdies today. That is what we want for this weekend scoring.
Rafa Cabrera-Bello ($7,700): Although I think he’ll keep himself in the mix this weekend, he’s only had 3 birdies so far this week. We can do better than that.
Tiger Woods ($7,700): My one concern here is Tiger’s energy levels and ability to grind out two more big rounds at this tough track. With that said, he has kept himself right in there, he’s hitting fairways (without the driver), and he’s starting to make vintage Tiger birdie putts and show us that fist pump. I will be using him in at least one line this weekend, a little added reason to root for Tiger, and I think he is truly on track for a break out.
Update: “Four back with 36-holes left on a course like this, it’s anyone’s game and I feel like I’m right there” – A little post round quote from Tiger
Louis Oosthuizen ($7,600): He had five birdies on the front nine on Thursday and no birdies on that same nine on Friday. However, he strikes me as a guy that may be a little over looked at the price range and I’d be willing to take a shot on him.
Thomas Pieters ($7,500): Thursday he tore the front nine apart and Friday he tore the back nine apart. He let us down last week but appears to be upping his game here. Another guy who people may be a little scared to play. Put those two 9-hole stretches together and we could be looking good here.
Jamie Lovemark ($7,500): It’s hard to ignore a potential co-leader at this price. He’s also done the unthinkable, shooting a cool 4-under on the back nine yesterday. My one concern is that I don’t know how he’ll fare in a more tense weekend situation and maybe being surrounded by some big names. If we have a Luke List ($7,400), Jamie Lovemark final pairing on the other hand, that could be very enticing. Stack em’ and pray?
IN CONCLUSION: I’m looking for guys who have shown us over the past two days that they can get birdies out here and they are capable of keeping themselves in the mix through any big mistakes that may be made. In this format, we need birdies and streaks to score points. Additionally, I want to roster guys who won’t crumble under weekend pressure. For anyone who has live lineups heading into the weekend, congratulations and good luck! For all of you that are feeling slightly defeated by PGA lately, keep your head in there. We have a long season ahead of us.
P.S. keep an eye out for tee times – it may be a good idea to avoid whoever is playing with Tiger. As seen by Kizzire the past two days.
Thanks for reading – feel free to reach out on the Lineup Logic slack chat or on Twitter @donaldremington // @ LineupLogicDFS