2022 Butterfield Bermuda Championship first-round leader picks and model
Fantasy Golf & Golf Betting

2022 Butterfield Bermuda Championship first-round leader picks and model

Each week of the PGA Tour season, the first-round leader market is one of the juciest and most difficult to predict. With such a small sample size of first rounds, the fickle nature of form and the vagaries of splits, tee times and weather, there's a good reason these bets pay off so well when hit.

Now, we're going to try to help you win more PGA Tour first-round leader bets. In addition to our weekly model, which has a great track record of identifying PGA Tour winners every week, we're launching a first-round leader model that looks at the players most likely to wind up with at least a share of the first-round lead.

How the rubric works

Finding a first-round leader is difficult, so our model uses several factors to identify a potential FRL.

I've started the model by looking at strokes gained against the field in the last 50, 20 and 10 tournaments played. I also use our derivitive, Quality Strokes Gained, which weights a player's strokes gained against the depth of field they face. We give weight toward the long-term with these figures. Then I add in a player's history at the host golf course (if available; it's not this week.) Add it all together, and that's our projected FRL number for a player.

There are plenty of factors data can't quantify, including luck of the draw, playing partners, hole locations, weather and sheer random stuff. However, all told, the model is designed to point out quality players and boost those middling players who have good current form or good course history.

2022 Butterfield Bermuda Championship rankings

With this being an experimental feature subject to tweaking, it will remain available for free until I feel it's dialed in properly. Then it will only be available for GNN members.

I've listed the top 20 here based on their total model score.

Click header to sort; the better their position, the more the rubric likes them

1 Detry, Thomas 2.051
2 Power, Seamus 1.173
3 Gordon, Will 1.041
4 Mccarthy, Denny 0.962
5 Hubbard, Mark 0.926
6 van Rooyen, Erik 0.782
7 Eckroat, Austin 0.769
8 Rai, Aaron 0.603
9 Yu, Kevin 0.552
10 Mcgirt, William 0.55
11 Harrington, Scott 0.547
12 Byrd, Jonathan 0.52
13 Knox, Russell 0.517
14 An, Byeong Hun 0.456
15 Taylor, Ben 0.428
16 Cone, Trevor 0.37
17 Rodgers, Patrick 0.358
18 Schmid, Matti 0.265
19 Wu, Brandon 0.24
20 Smalley, Alex 0.236

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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