2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational DraftKings daily fantasy golf picks
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2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational DraftKings daily fantasy golf picks

Each week, including this week’s 2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational, Golf News Net offers daily fantasy (DFS) golf advice, picks, lineups and tips for DraftKings PGA Tour games, scrutinizing the pricing model and looking for players who will perform best in both guaranteed prize pool (GPP) events and cash games.

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2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational DraftKings picks

Each week, we’ll offer players in 3-5 buckets of pricing so as to offer some mix-and-matching with your lineups based on our recommendations.

Finish Trends

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 individual PGA Tour events.

  • Tony Finau – 3 – T-2 Farmers Insurance Open, P-2 Genesis Invitational, T-14 WGC Concession
  • Matt Fitzpatrick – 2 – T-5 Genesis Invitational, T-11 WGC Concession
  • James Hahn – 2 – T-10 Phoenix Open, T-15 Genesis Invitational
  • Max Homa – 2 – T-7 Pebble Beach, WIN Genesis Invitational
  • Viktor Hovland – 3 – T-2 Farmers Insurance Open, T-5 Genesis Invitational, T-2 WGC Concession
  • Rory McIlroy – 2 – T-13 Phoenix Open, T-6 WGC Concession
  • Francesco Molinari – 2 – T-10 Farmers Insurance Open, T-8 Genesis Invitational
  • Louis Oosthuizen – 2 – T-11 Phoenix Open, T-6 WGC Concession
  • Andrew Putnam – 2 – T-7 Phoenix Open, T-5 Puerto Rico Open
  • Patrick Reed – 2 – WIN Farmers Insurance Open, T-9 WGC Concession
  • Jordan Spieth – 2 – T-4 Phoenix Open, T-3 AT&T Pebble Beach, T-15 Genesis Invitational
  • Will Zalatoris – 2 – T-7 Farmers Insurance Open, T-15 Genesis Invitational

Event Finish History

We like to look for potential horses for courses with most PGA Tour events, particularly those with regular host courses. We’re looking at players with multiple top-15 finishes in the last five years.

  • Byeong Hun An – 2
  • Bryson DeChambeau – 2
  • Matt Fitzpatrick – 3
  • Tommy Fleetwood – 2
  • Rickie Fowler – 2
  • Lucas Glover – 2
  • Tyrrell Hatton – 2
  • Charley Hoffman – 3
  • Charles Howell III – 2
  • Sung Kang – 2
  • Marc Leishman – 3
  • Rory McIlroy – 4
  • Keith Mitchell – 2
  • Francesco Molinari – 3
  • Justin Rose – 3
  • Henrik Stenson – 2

Course Fits

It seems to me the best way to use Strokes Gained data is to give a sense of a course fit. My working theory is a player is a course fit — or a potential course fit, at least — if their Strokes Gained breakout when they finish in the top 25 is similar to the average for top-25 finishers at this week’s event.

We can’t model this week, though, with a new course that’s a one-off for wherever this championship is heading next. However, my hypothesis is that this course will be a lot like PGA National in terms of correlation, so let’s test that.

Here’s the breakout:

Putting: 27%
Tee to Green: 73%
Off the Tee: 22%
Approach: 36%
Around the Green: 15%

Some fits include:
Dylan Frittelli
Lucas Glover
Francesco Molinari
Keith Mitchell
Doc Redman
Rusell Knox
Sungjae Im
Matthew NeSmith
Tyrrell Hatton

Strokes Gained T2G Trends

It’s important when looking at current form to see which players are overperforming and underperforming their long-term trends (last 50 tournaments) compared to short-term trends (last 10 tournaments).

Here are the overperformers:

  • Casey, Paul: 1.607
  • Spieth, Jordan: 1.04
  • Lee, Danny: 0.956
  • Putnam, Andrew: 0.925
  • Herman, Jim: 0.872
  • Hovland, Viktor: 0.834
  • Fleetwood, Tommy: 0.823
  • Conners, Corey: 0.81
  • Clark, Wyndham: 0.763
  • Davis, Cameron: 0.743

Here are the underperformers:

  • Westwood, Lee: -3.092
  • Ventura, Kristoffer: -2.049
  • McDowell, Graeme: -1.654
  • Swafford, Hudson: -1.224
  • Gordon, Will: -1.032
  • English, Harris: -1.013
  • Dufner, Jason: -1.002
  • Villegas, Camilo: -0.974
  • Laird, Martin: -0.911
  • Dahmen, Joel: -0.898

We also have a new tool which looks at SG T2G over the last 30 tournaments and a player’s relative variance, showing you which players are the most consistent from week to week. Check it out!

This week’s model

Check it out here.

Also, we’ve updated our tools comparing players’ strokes gained by course length and par, as well strokes gained putting by grass!

2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational DraftKings recommendations

$10,000 and up

We have six five in this group, and I like Rory, Hovland, Reed and Hatton, particularly the last three.


We have 18 players in this group, and this is where we want to make a lineup. I like Fitzpatrick, Im, Hideki, Casey, Fleetwood, Louis, Molinari, Zalatoris, Burns, Leishman and Kokrak.


DraftKings typically breaks the rest of the field in half at the $7,000 mark. Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Cam Tringale, Charley Hoffman, Branden Grace, Matt Jones, Grillo, Conners, Ben An and Andrew Putnam.

Below or at $7,000

We’re looking for bargains in this range. Wyndham Clark, Matt NeSmith, Patton Kizzire, Sebastian Munoz, Russell Knox, Kyle Stanley, Will Gordon, Zach Johnson.

A sample Arnold Palmer Invitational DraftKings GPP lineup

  1. Matt Fitzpatrick – $9,800
  2. Paul Casey – $9,100
  3. Louis Oosthuizen – $8,800
  4. Jason Kokrak – $8,100
  5. Wyndham Clark – $7,000
  6. Patton Kizzire – $6,800

About the author


Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for over a decade, working for NBC Sports, Golf Channel, Yahoo Sports and SB Nation. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He used to be a good golfer.

Ballengee can be reached by email at ryan[at]thegolfnewsnet.com

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