Hi everyone! I hope that you all are geared up for some great DFS golf action at the FedEx St Jude Classic. Last week was a bit of an odd one as the two overwhelming tournament favorites, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm, really struggled and both missed the cut. I had a whole bunch of DJ and Rahm in my lineups, so it was a down week for me, though I did have some pretty decent cashes as well, so it was not a total loss.
Moving on to this week’s FedEx St Jude Classic in Memphis, we have one of the weakest fields of the year since this tournament immediately precedes the US Open. Many of the world’s top golfers are already in Erin Hills, preparing for next week’s major. Additionally, some folks who were originally scheduled to play this tournament, like Steve Stricker and Jamie Lovemark, qualified for the US Open on Monday and have withdrawn from the St Jude Classic.
I should also point out that this column is written on Tuesday evening – I would do a final check of your lineups just prior to tee times to make sure that none of your picks have withdrawn on the eve of the tournament.
Despite all of the negativity above, this should still be a great week of DFS golf. We are back to a par 70 course measuring about 7,200 yards, with only two par 5s. In terms of stats, I am really liking guys with great short games, so I am focusing on Stroke Gained Putting and Strokes Gained Around the Green. There are some world class players in the field like Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson and Adam Scott, who should make this tournament interesting.
And, from a personal point of view, my most profitable DFS week of the season this year came during the Puerto Rico Open, which is another weak field event, so I am excited to see if I am a weak field specialist.
If you have any questions – don’t hesitate to hit me up on Twitter at @AssemblyNeil.
Rickie Fowler ($12,ooo DraftKings/$10,500 FanDuel) – Rickie is the class of the field this week, and though he will be chalky, I will have many Fowler lineups. Las Vegas has installed Fowler as the favorite and he is the #1 ranked player in this tournament. Looking at my stats of the week, Fowler ranks 3rd in the field in strokes gained putting and 8th in strokes gained around the green. If Fowler gets off to a good start, I think he can win this tournament.
Francesco Molinari ($10,500 DraftKings/$8,700 FanDuel) – In my mind, Molinari is the clear 2nd best player at this event. The Italian comes in playing great golf, with consecutive top 10s in his last two starts and 9 top 25 finishes in 11 starts this season. Molinari is the 4th favorite according to Las Vegas and is the 3rd ranked player in the field. Despite that, he is only the 7th most expensive golfer on FanDuel. I will be playing a bunch of Molinari this week.
Phil Mickelson ($10,500 DraftKings/$9,700 FanDuel) – Mickelson will not be playing the US Open this year because he is attending his daughter’s graduation. I think he is in it to win it this week in Memphis. Big Mick has an amazing course history, with top 11 finishes in his last 4 trips to the St. Jude Classic including 3 top 3s. Mickelson also excels in my stats of the week as the 19th best player in the field in strokes gained putting and 10th best in strokes gained around the green.
Upper Middle Class
Rafa Cabrera-Bello ($8,600 DraftKings/$8,300 FanDuel) – Cabrera-Bello comes in with mediocre form, having missed the cut in 4 of his last 6 events, though he did manage a top 5 finish at the Players a couple of weeks back. Despite the poor recent performances, RCB is the 8th ranked player in the field and only the 11th most expensive player on DraftKings. Moreover, he ranks a rock solid 4th in the field in strokes gained putting and a pretty solid 33rd in strokes gained around the green. I think Cabrera-Bello will contend for the title this week.
Seung-Yul Noh ($8,100 DraftKings/$6,400 FanDuel) – I have a feeling that Noh will be heavily owned, especially on FanDuel where he is absurdly cheap. But Noh will be popular for a reason, he has an excellent course history and is an excellent course fit. In terms of history, Noh has finished in the top 10 in 3 of his last 4 appearances at the St. Jude Classic. And in terms of course fit, Noh ranks 27th in the field in strokes gained putting and an excellent 9th in strokes gained around the green. The young Korean is a bit pricey on DraftKings, but I will still play him a bunch. He is almost a free square on FanDuel this week.
Ian Poulter ($7,600 DraftKings/$7,100 FanDuel) – If you want to play narrative street, this tournament is likely more important to Poulter than many other golfers since he has the chance to make the US Open if he wins the event and gets into the top 60 in the world golf rankings. Poulter has some decent history at this course, having finished in the top 10 the last time he played. He is also the 13th favorite to win the tournament according to Las Vegas and ranks 2nd in the field in strokes gained around the green. I think Poulter will be contending come this weekend.
Matt Jones ($7,500 DraftKings/$5,700 FanDuel) – Here is another guy who is near must own on FanDuel at close to bargain basement prices. The young Aussie is a short game wizard, ranking a solid 46th in the field strokes gained putting and an even more impressive 4th in strokes gained around the green. Jones has found some success in Memphis as he has consecutive top 26 finishes at this event, including a 3rd place finish two years ago. I like Jones to do some damage this week.
Bang for your Buck
Danny Lee ($7,200 DraftKings/$7,500 FanDuel) – Lee comes in playing some rock solid golf with 3 consecutive made cuts, including two top 10 finishes. Las Vegas likes Lee to continue playing well as they have made him the 16th favorite to win this event, and yet the DFS sites are pricing him in the middle tier. Lee is also impressive putting, which will be a key this week, as he ranks 26th in the field in strokes gained with the flat stick. Lee should be a safe cut maker for cash games, and has some upside for tournaments as well.
Harris English ($7,000 DraftKings/$6,500 FanDuel) – Usually my father-in-law, who helps me with my picks, loves Harris English. But this week in a change of direction, I like English and my father-in-law has remained neutral. English is a former winner at this event, having captured the title two years ago. He also ranks top 25 in the field in my stats of the week as he is 20th in strokes gained putting and 24th in strokes gained around the green. Hopefully English will earn me some dollars this week.
J.B. Holmes ($6,800 DraftKings/$9,100 FanDuel) – Holmes is certainly not in the discount bin on FanDuel, where he is the 5th highest priced golfer in the field. On DraftKings, however, they are pricing Holmes next to guys like Jason Bohn, who has not finished in the top 35 in any tournament this year. Holmes is definitely rock solid value on DraftKings as he is the 12th ranked player in the field and the 23rd favorite according to Las Vegas. Moreover, he is pretty solid in my stats of the week ranking 48th in the field in strokes gained putting and 32nd in strokes gained around the green. Holmes will be in many of my DraftKings lineups – and none of my FanDuel lineups.
Bryce Molder ($6,700 DraftKings/$5,300 FanDuel) – Molder is my dart throw of the week, as he has missed the cut in his last 3 events, and has not even had a round of golf in the 60s since April. Despite these red flags, Molder is a short game specialist ranking 23rd in the field in strokes gained putting and 11th in strokes gained around the green. I can’t imagine that many people will be playing Molder, and at 2-3% ownership, he is a nice speculative play in GPPs.
OTHERS OF NOTE:
I will throw out a few others that I will be playing this week:
Peter Uihlein ($7,200 DraftKings/$7,000 FanDuel) is reasonably priced on both sites and will certainly make birdies. I think that he is a good bet for a top 25 finish and should easily make value.
Brian Gay ($8,200 DraftKings/$5,700 FanDuel) is too expensive for my taste on DraftKings, but he will be in many of my FanDuel lineups. Gay finished 6th at this event last year and has some other great finishes in Memphis in the past.
Chad Campbell ($7,600 DraftKings/$5,600 FanDuel) is another guy with a great course history that is priced well on FanDuel. Campbell has made his last 5 cuts at this event, including two top 10 finishes.
Charl Schwarzel ($7,900 DraftKings/$8,100 FanDuel) is an excellent golfer and is priced very well, especially on DraftKings. Schwarzel is the 4th ranked golfer in the field and the 10th favorite to win according to Las Vegas. He is very much in play at this price.
Camillo Villegas ($6,700 DraftKings/$5,700 FanDuel) – is playing a bit better golf with a top 10 finish a few weeks back. He loves this tournament, having made 4 straight cuts in Memphis, including 3 top 20 finishes.
Good luck to all of you this week!
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