Welcome back to Golf News Net’s weekly fantasy golf rankings. Each week of the PGA Tour season, we’ll present our top fantasy golf picks for that week’s tournament and give fantasy golf and betting tips for DraftKings’ and FanDuel’s one-week fantasy leagues, daily fantasy golf lineups, Yahoo fantasy golf, Golf Channel fantasy golf and PGA Tour fantasy golf leagues.
The PGA Tour heads into San Diego for what has become the unofficial start to the PGA Tour calendar, with Torrey Pines again hosting the Farmers Insurance Open. A slew of top-50 players are in the field, including Tiger Woods, who makes his first official PGA Tour start since August 2015.
For those new to our weekly picks, we offer our top 10 players for free. GNN Plus members get additional analysis and research otherwise hidden to the general public, and that’s in addition to access to a searchable database of PGA Tour results from 2011-present, top-15 PGA Tour trends and season-long DraftKings salary trends.
2017 Farmers Insurance Open rankings: Top 10 picks
1. Brandt Snedeker – Your 2021 U.S. Open champion LOVES this place. He’s the defending champion and is one of a handful of guys in the field with a stud record.
2. Dustin Johnson – DJ could be jet-lagged after finishing T-2 in Abu Dhabi. He doesn’t have a swell record here. But he’s healthy and we’ve seen a good finish of late. This guy is a top-10 machine.
3. Jason Day – The world No. 1 could have been No. 1-4 on our list this week. He’s in at No. 3 despite a great record because we just don’t know where his health is at this point.
4. Jimmy Walker – Jimmy Walker has been somewhat quietly playing good golf since winning the PGA Championship. He shocked with a MC at the Sony Open; don’t expect that here.
5. Hideki Matsuyama – OK, not the best record at Torrey Pines, and we may be riding a down wave here with Hideki. However, it’s hard to ignore his ballstriking when the rough is expected to be so thick.
6. Justin Rose – Rose came out of the gate really well, with a nice effort in the Sony Open in Hawaii add.
7. Phil Mickelson – Mickelson is a bit of a gamble, of course, but this is his hometown event. He demonstrated an improving game each day in the California desert.
8. Charles Howell III – Is it a PGA Tour event in California? Oh yes? Pick CH3. He’s on fire.
9. Rickie Fowler – A T-36 in Abu Dhabi isn’t inspiring, but he’s a California kid with a game that can do well on these two courses.
10. Martin Laird – This is a gamble play, and there are considerably better players in the field. However, he’s playing well of late and has a modest track record at Torrey Pines. Hard to ignore the combo.
My DraftKings lineup for this week:
- Brandt Snedeker – $9,500
- Jimmy Walker – $9,400
- Jon Rahm – $9,200
- Charles Howell III – $7,300
- Aaron Baddeley – $6,900
- Scott Stallings – $6,800
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GNN Plus Research and Analysis
Recent PGA Tour Trends
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.
- Adam Hadwin – 2 – T-10 OHL Classic, 2nd CareerBuilder Challenge
- Brendan Steele – 2 – T-6 Tournament of Champions, T-6 CareerBuilder Challenge
- Chad Campbell – 2 – T-13 RSM Classic, T-6 CareerBuilder Challenge
- Charles Howell III – 4 – T-7 OHL Classic, T-13 RSM Classic, T-8 Sony Open, T-12 CareerBuilder
- Gary Woodland – 2 – 2nd OHL Classic, T-6 Sony Open
- Hudson Swafford – 2 – T-13 Sony Open, WIN CareerBuilder Challenge
- Jamie Lovemark – 2 – T-6 RSM Classic, T-4 Sony Open
- Luke List – 3 – T-7 OHL Classic, T-13 RSM Classic, T-13 Sony Open
- Martin Laird – 2 – T-13 OHL Classic, T-9 Martin Laird
- Pat Perez – WIN OHL Classic, T-3 Tournament of Champions
- Patrick Reed – 2 – T-6 Tournament of Champions, T-12 CareerBuilder Challenge
- Stewart Cink – 2 – T-15 OHL Classic, T-10 RSM Classic
Event Finish History
We’re also interested in the players in the field that have finished in the top 15 at the Farmers Insurance Open multiple times in the last five years (even with a different rotation):
- Aaron Baddeley – 2
- Brandt Snedeker – 4
- Charles Howell III – 3
- D.A. Points – 2
- Graham DeLaet – 2
- Hunter Mahan – 3
- J.B. Holmes – 2
- Jason Day – 3
- Jhonattan Vegas – 2
- Jimmy Walker – 4
- John Huh – 2
- K.J. Choi – 3
- Marc Leishman – 2
- Martin Laird – 2
- Nick Watney – 3
- Rickie Fowler – 2
- Ryo Ishikawa – 2
- Scott Stallings – 2
- Shane Lowry – 2
Ideally, we want to identify players who are both playing well right now and have a good track record here. Our guys this week: Charles Howell III, Martin Laird
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 $1,000 over their 2016-17 average salary:
- J.B. Holmes
- Dominic Bozzelli
- Rickie Fowler
- Louis Oosthuizen
- Shane Lowry
Here are the players playing this week with multiple top-15 finishes in the last five PGA Tour events that re playing at least $500 BELOW their average salary from the 2016-17 season:
- Adam Hadwin
- Brendan Steele
- Charles Howell III
- Luke List
- Martin Laird
- Pat Perez
Success at Torrey Pines
Torrey Pines has two courses, the North and South, with the North having been renovated by Tom Weiskopf as part of a nearly $13 million investment in the course. Fundamentally, the routing changed, bunkers were generally enlarged and some putting surfaces were changed. However, this wasn’t a total gut job, meaning Torrey North, even a few hundred yards longer than before, is still Torrey North. It’s meant to be playable and kind of easy, particularly compared to Torrey South, which Rees Jones ruined and is the longest course regularly played on the PGA Tour. So, you may your hay on your day at Torrey North and need to be able to put the ball in play on both courses. With reports of juicy rough on both courses, hitting fairways will mean something to a lot of players this week.