Welcome back to Golf News Net’s weekly fantasy golf picks. Each week of the PGA Tour season, we’ll present our top picks for that week’s tournament and make recommendations for DraftKings’ one-week fantasy leagues.
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Patrick Reed did it: He finally put together four good rounds of driving to finish off a PGA Tour win. He’s the FedEx Cup playoff leader heading to the Deutsche Bank Championship, which starts Friday at TPC Boston. Rickie Fowler is the defending champion in a tournament Jason Day just loves.
For GNN Plus subscribers, you can access our NEW searchable database of PGA Tour results from 2011-present, our top-15 finish chart and season-long trends on DraftKings valuations. They’ll be available at your disposal as part of a growing set of tools to help in your research.
2016 Deutsche Bank Championship top 10 picks
1. Jason Day — Day has four top-15 finishes in this event in the last five years. He loves the course and is a putting demon.
2. Dustin Johnson — D.J. doesn’t have a whole lot to show for himself at TPC Boston, but it’s hard to dislike a guy who has enjoyed the season he’s had.
3. Patrick Reed — It was impossible to ignore Reed last week on Long Island, and it’s hard to see why he doesn’t deserve a look again this week. He’s in America Mode.
4. Jordan Spieth — Something is just a little off about Spieth’s game right now, but it’s still good enough to finish in the top 15 most weeks.
5. Rickie Fowler — The defending champion choked away a chance at The Barclays and a spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team. He’ll be highly motivated on a course where he has good vibes.
6. Henrik Stenson — Stenson would rank higher were it not for the WD at The Barclays. He may be walking wounded between now and the end of the season.
7. Jim Furyk — For you Furyk haters, Furyk’s going to lock up a captain’s pick this week. He loves the DBC and performs well here.
8. Emiliano Grillo — Whenever Emiliano Grillo figures out how to putt a little better, he’s going on a tear.
9. Matt Kuchar — Kuchar is a guy who seems destined for a Ryder Cup captain’s pick, but he’s motivated to show he can play with the pressure on. Consistent since May.
10. Ryan Moore — Yeah, Ryan Moore is playing better than Rory McIlroy right now. T-7 at The Barclays is a mark of his ballstriking.
My DraftKings team for this week:
1. Jason Day – $12,500
2. Jim Furyk – $8,800
3. Ryan Moore – $7,900
4. Brandt Snedeker – $7,700
5. Steve Stricker – $7,000
6. Webb Simpson – $6,100
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If you want to win at DraftKings daily fantasy golf, you have to figure out a way to find six golfers that play all 72 holes and earn roughly 85 points each.
You likely have to identify a couple of players in the top five, at least the top seven, and you’d ideally not have a player finish outside the top 20.
Doing that takes research, looking at a variety of factors, including:
- Finish trends, both in recent weeks on the PGA Tour and at that week’s event,
- Salary trends, deciphering which players are showing value based on their performance, and
- Statistical trends, identifying the common threads among winners in that week’s event
That’s what Golf News Net will deliver each week to GNN Plus members in this space, offering a complete research package which dives into these three areas to find the players that should be in your lineup for this week.
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We start by looking at the recent past, back at players who have finished inside the top 15 in the last five PGA Tour events — not their last five starts. Here are the players in this week’s field with the most top-15 finishes in the last five non-Olympic PGA Tour events:
- Brooks Koepka – 2 – T-4 PGA Championship, T-9 Travelers Championship
- Daniel Summerhays – 2 – 3rd PGA Championship, T-11 Travelers Championship
- Emiliano Grillo – 2 – T-13 PGA Championship, T-2 The Barclays
- Hideki Matsuyama – 2 – T-4 PGA Championship, T-3 Wyndham Championship
- Jason Day – 2 – 2nd PGA Championship, T-4 The Barclays
- Jim Furyk – 2 – T-5 Travelers Championship, T-10 Wyndham Championship
- Johnson Wagner – 2 – T-5 John Deere Classic, T-5 Wyndham Championship
- Jordan Spieth – 2 – T-13 PGA Championship, T-10 The Barclays
- Justin Thomas – 2 – T-3 Travelers Championship, T-10 The Barclays
- Kevin Na – 2 – T-8 John Deere Classic, T-10 Wyndham Championship
- Patrick Reed – 3 – T-13 PGA Championship, T-11 Travelers Championship, WIN The Barclays
- Ryan Moore – 2 – WIN John Deere Classic, T-7 The Barclays
We’re also interested in the players in the field that have finished in the top 15 at the Deutsche Bank Championship multiple times in the last five years:
- Adam Scott – 2
- Brandt Snedeker – 2
- Henrik Stenson – 2
- Jason Day – 4
- Jerry Kelly – 2
- Jim Furyk – 3
- John Senden – 2
- Louis Oosthuizen – 2
- Matt Kuchar – 2
- Phil Mickelson – 2
- Rory McIlroy – 2
- Ryan Moore – 2
- Steve Stricker – 2
- Webb Simpson – 2
Ideally, we want to find players who are both playing well now and have a history of playing well at TPC Boston. We don’t have any players this week who fit in both categories.
DraftKings salaries change from week to week, depending on field strength and size, as well a player’s recent record and their history on a course. It’s in looking at how a salary changes over time that we might get some clues as to players that could be a little overrated or underrated.
Here’s the list of players in the field playing $500 over their average salary this season:
- Jason Day
- Si Woo Kim
- Billy Horschel
- Dustin Johnson
- Johnson Wagner
- Sean O’Hair
- Emiliano Grillo
Here are the players with multiple top 15 finishes in their last five events that are playing this week at least $500 BELOW their average salary this season.
- Daniel Summerhays – $1,213 BELOW
- Hideki Matsuyama – $1,455 BELOW
- Justin Thomas – $1,074 BELOW
More than perhaps any course on the PGA Tour, I believe TPC Boston places an importance on par-3 scoring. Some will tell you par-5 scoring is key, and it is, but the par 5s at TPC Boston are largely reachable by the field. That turns them into par 4.5s that should be scored. However, three of the par 3s at TPC Boston are more than 200 yards, and the other brings water and a lot of other peril into play. So let’s look at par-3 performance to find some diamonds in the rough.
1. Phil Mickelson
2. Ricky Barnes
T-3. John Huh
T-3. Louis Oosthuizen
T-5. Ryan Moore
7. Jim Furyk
T-8. Sergio Garcia
T-8. Robert Garrigus
T-12. Dustin Johnson
T-17. Jason Day
T-17. Justin Rose
T-20. Adam Hadwin
T-20. Charl Schwartzel
T-24. Jerry Kelly
T-24. Hideki Matsuyama
T-24. Steve Stricker