Head over to the Tournament History table to see how the field has played at this tournament and the full leaderboard for the last three seasons!
The Fed Ex Cup playoffs begin this week at Plainfield Country Club in Edison, NJ. The Barclays was last here in 2011 and Dustin Johnson won in a rain shortened 54 hole tournament with a score of -19. Plainfield CC played very easy that year due to the wet conditions. The course should be firmer and faster this year with rain only in the forecast for Tuesday. Plainfield is a shorter course overall but has some longer holes, especially the Par 5s. The course has tight, tree lined fairways with bunkers positioned in all the right (or wrong) spots. Many approach shots to the green will be blind because of the hilly nature of the course and the elevated greens. The rough is thick but not unplayable. The greens are large, undulating and elevated, with most being sloped heavily from back to front, a signature for Donald Ross designed courses.
Looking at the course description above, a few key stats come to the forefront. I will be using these stats and current form to select my golfers for DraftKings this week. The golfer’s course history at Plainfield CC will be used as well but not as much weight will be put on it because there has only been one PGA tournament held here in the past.
Key Stats For The Course
***In order of importance with the most important first. Not including Strokes Gained Tee to Green (SG:T2G) and Strokes Gained Putting (SG:P), which are key stats every week.
With the multi level, sloping greens at Plainfield CC, proximity to the hole on approach shots is my most important stat of the week. With the slopes on the greens, golfers will have to aim small to keep the ball on the right level for important birdie attempts. Miss the aiming spot 6 inches to the left or right and you could be looking at 50 foot putts with multiple breaks. An easy recipe for 3 putts and bogeys. Picking a specific proximity yardage stat is tough on this course because the hole lengths are all over the place but in 2011 fourteen players in the Top 17 finished that season inside the Top 65 in Proximity from 50-125 yards (Prox 50+).
Greens in Regulation (GIR):
Missing the green will lead to trouble this week at Plainfield CC. There are massive slopes and multiple levels on almost all the greens. If golfers miss the green they will have to play delicate and creative chip shots up and around those massive slopes to get the ball close. If the rain stays away and the greens are fast, even some of the best chip shots will lead to 10 footers or more for par. Eight of the Top 12 at The Barclays in 2011 finished that season with a GIR ranking inside the Top 65 and most of the Top 20 that week had a high GIR%.
Par 4 Scoring (P4):
The last time The Barclays was played at Plainfield ten of the Top 12 golfers finished that year ranked 67th or better in Par 4 Scoring. There are twelve par 4 holes on the course. It’s easy to see that it will be an important stat. I will also take a look at par 3 scoring (P3) since there will be four per round and they vary in distance.
3 Putt Avoidance (3PA):
No golfer is perfect. Approach shots are going to be missed. Long putts are going to have to be dealt with at some point in time due to the large undulating greens. Avoiding the 3 putt will be important to be and stay in contention. In 2011 eight of the Top 12 finished better than 68th in 3PA that year.
Total Driving (TD):
You don’t have to be a long hitter this week to contend but it will help having wedges into these greens. Accuracy off the tee will also be important due to well placed fairway bunkers and thick rough. There are also holes where the tee shot needs to be in a certain area to have a clear shot at the green. The TD stat combines both so it makes sense to use this week. 7 of the Top 12 in 2011 finished 79th or better in TD that year.
High End Picks ($9000 and up)
Jordan Spieth ($12600):
He is now officially the #1 player in the world and there is no doubt about it. He has finished Top 5 in five out of his last six events with two wins. His other finish was tenth. He can win ANY week and this week is no exception. His price tag is the highest on DraftKings but I think making at least a couple of lineups with him in it is a smart idea.
Jason Day ($11500):
It was nice to see Jason Day win a Major after coming close so many times. He is quickly nudging his way into making the Big 2 (Spieth and Rory) a Big 3. His skill level is on par with both and now with a Major under his belt, the mental aspect of his game might be catching up to the other two. He finished 13th last time out at Plainfield CC. Expect him to beat that and contend for the win this weekend.
Justin Rose ($10900):
I picked Justin Rose to win the PGA Championship and the Quicken Loans National. He finished 4th both times. He is again my #1 favorite to win this week. His stats for the course are the second best in the field. He’s 15th in Prox, 18th in Prox (50+), 8th in GIR, 44th in P4 scoring, 4th in TD, and 5th in SG:T2G. His putting stats aren’t the best but they are still above average. He finished 6th at Plainfield in 2011 and his last four finishes on Tour have been 4th, 3rd, 4th, and 6th. He’s going to win again soon and I think this is the week.
Brooks Koepka ($9700):
Once Koepka wins a tournament with a world class field, he’ll get more press but he’s already a favorite in the DFS community. He might just earn that respect from the average golf fan this week. He is my #2 pick to win. All this guy does is get Top 10s. In his last seven starts on Tour he has finished Top 10 five times with two 18th place finishes in the other tournaments. His stats for the course are great. He’s 57th in Prox, 9th in GIR, 6th in P4 scoring, 36th in TD, 20th in SG:T2G, and 8th in SG:P. Expect no worse than a Top 10 from him.
Matt Kuchar ($9300):
Kuchar is playing some of his best golf of the year recently. He finished 7th and 12th at the last two Majors and has five Top 26 finishes in his last six events. His stats for the course are only slightly above average but he is 68th in Prox (50+), 12th in P4 scoring, 28th in SG:T2G, and 29th in SG:P. He finished 2nd last time at Plainfield and I think another Top 10 finish is not out of the question.
Mid Level Picks ($7000-$8900)
Jim Furyk ($8800):
In Furyk’s last three non Major tournaments played he has finished 3rd, 4th, and 5th. Solid finishes from one of the most consistent golfers on Tour. It’s not like these were weaker field tournaments either. Two of the three tournaments were WGC Bridgestone and The Memorial. Maybe the pressure of the Majors gets to him but since this isn’t a Major, I expect him to do well. He’s 2nd in Prox, 28th in GIR, 19th in P4 scoring, 28th in P3 scoring, and 4th in SG:T2G. He will be a cash game staple once again this week.
Paul Casey ($8700):
Paul Casey is my #3 pick to win. He has had a solid year with six Top 10s and he finished 3rd last week at the Wyndham. He is also Top 5 in stats for the course this week. Casey is 15th in Prox, 5th in GIR, 16th in P4 scoring, 14th in TD, and 10th in SG:T2G. His putting stats are just average but if his flatstick gets hot, he can win.
Robert Streb ($7900):
Streb has been one of the most consistent golfers for PGA DFS in the last couple of months. He has made his last ten cuts and finished Top 20 in eight of them. Other than Proximity his stats for the course are excellent. He’s 11th in GIR, 9th in P4 scoring, 7th in P3 scoring, 53rd in 3PA, 49th in TD, 27th in SG:T2G, and 22nd in SG:P. At $7900 I actually think he is underpriced.
Webb Simpson ($7900):
If Webb Simpson was just an average putter, he’d be one of the best golfers in the world. I actually liked what I saw last week from his flatstick as he made multiple long putts for eagle at the Wyndham. Even with a crappy putter he has made fifteen of eighteen cuts this year and he finished 10th last time The Barclays was played at Plainfield. His stats for the course are great except for his putting numbers. He’s 44th in Prox, 27th in Prox (50+), 60th in GIR, 12th in P3 scoring, 17th in TD, and 6th in SG:T2G. His game is good enough to make the cut even if his putter is causing him problems but if he can have an above average SG:P stat for the week, he could finish high on the leaderboard by the end of the tournament.
David Lingmerth ($7800):
This Swede has been one of the hottest players on Tour recently. After a weak beginning of the season, he has made his last seven cuts with four Top 6s and a win at The Memorial. He’s 44th in Prox, 34th in Prox (50+), 57th in P4 scoring, 14th in 3PA, 28th in TD, 53rd in SG:T2G, and 56th in SG:P. Use him with confidence this week.
Danny Lee ($7700):
My fellow Korean is another golfer playing his best golf towards the end of the season. In his last four non Major tournaments played he has finished 6th, 4th, 3rd, and 1st. His stats for the course are just above average but he is 27th in Prox, 30th in Prox (50+), 4th in P3 scoring, and 28th in SG:P. Riding the hot hand is usually always a good idea.
Ryan Moore ($7600):
Moore’s stats for the course are very strong. He’s 72nd in Prox, 24th in Prox (50+), 74th in P4 scoring, 55th in P3 scoring, 52nd in 3PA, 46th in TD, 30th in SG:T2G, and 54th in SG:P. He also has made six of his last eight cuts including a 10th place finish last week with the two MCs coming at Majors. I think he easily makes the cut.
Russell Henley ($7500):
Henley is my sleeper pick to win this week. His last three tournaments played have been the PGA Championship, WGC Bridgestone, and The Open Championship. He finished 12th, 17th, and 20th respectively in those events. Solid finishes for tournaments with world class fields. His stats are good for the course but two specific stats stand out to me. He is 7th in TD, and 7th in SG:P. His putting and driving are superb so if he can hit a lot of greens, he could come away with a sneaky victory on Sunday.
Wil Wilcox ($7200):
Wil the Thrill is the stat prince of the PGA. Every week I look at my stats for the course and every week Wil Wilcox is near the top. This week is no different. He’s 22nd in Prox, 4th in GIR, 5th in P4 scoring, 4th in P3 scoring, 2nd in TD, 19th in SG:T2G, and 46th in SG:P. He also has solid recent form. He has made his last 5 cuts with three Top 10 finishes. He made a lot of people sweat last week by making the cut on the number and he might do so again, but I think in the end he will make the cut and he has a lot of upside.
Brendan Steele ($7100):
Steele has made seventeen out of twenty cuts overall and five of six cuts recently with two Top 10s in that span. At $7100 that is almost enough information to use him in a lot of lineups but he also has pretty good stats (other than Proximity) for the course. He’s 24th in GIR, 8th in P4 scoring, 18th in TD, and 13th in SG:T2G. He should up his made cut total for the year to eighteen this week.
Nick Watney ($7000):
Watney is a slightly risky pick because he has only made 64% of his cuts this year but he has made seven of his last nine recently. In an interview prior to the Wyndham he said that he had adjusted his putting stroke recently and it has helped his golf game a lot. It showed last week at Sedgefield as he was in contention until a two over 72 on Sunday knocked him out. His stats for the course are well above average. He’s 53rd in Prox, 39th in P4 scoring, 61st in TD, and 47th in SG:T2G. He also had a Top 10 finish at The Barclays in 2011. I would still only use him in GPPs though.
Low End Value Picks ($6100-$6900)
***80 out of the 119 golfers playing this week fall into the $5500-$6900 price range. Looking at the previous time The Barclays was played at Plainfield CC, a lot of lesser known golfers finished inside the Top 20. Therefore I will be giving you more low end value picks than usual this week.
Jason Bohn ($6900):
If Wil Wilcox is the stat prince of the PGA, Jason Bohn is the king. His stats for the course are usually in the Top 3 every week. This week he is #1. He’s 2nd in Prox, 14th in Prox (50+), 27th in GIR, 2nd in P4 scoring, 12th in P3 scoring, 2nd in 3PA, 40th in SG:T2G, and 38th in SG:P. He has also made eight of his last nine cuts with five Top 13s in that span. At $6900, you’ll be seeing him in a lot of my lineups.
Harris English ($6800):
English has disappointed a lot of DFSers this year but only when he has been highly priced. At $6800 this week he is a bargain. He has made 80% of his cuts this year including his last nine starts. Can’t really ask for more at $6800 but we get it when we look at his stats. He’s 72nd in Prox, 59th in GIR, 56th in P4 scoring, 42nd in P3 scoring, 49th in TD, 68th in SG:T2G, and 24th in SG:P. Expect him to reach ten made cuts in a row.
Chad Campbell ($6600):
This is another guy playing his best golf of the year. He has made his last eight cuts with three Top 11s and finished worse than 37th only once in that time span. He is 37th in Prox, 49th in Prox (50+), 30th in GIR, 42nd in 3PA, and 48th in SG:T2G. I actually think he is pretty safe for your cash game lineups this week and at his price, you can fit a few studs in your lineup without worry.
Pat Perez ($6500):
Perez has made eleven out of his last twelve cuts with his only MC coming at Whistling Straits. Plainfield CC is no Whistling Straits. Perez has also finished Top 22 in three out of his last four made cuts. His stats are on point as well. He’s 48th in Prox, 49th in GIR, 7th in P4 scoring, 76th in 3PA, 81st in TD, 79th in SG:T2G, and 48th in SG:P. He hasn’t played too well in tournaments with strong fields but I can see him making the cut this week. After that, anything can happen.
Morgan Hoffman ($6400):
His stats for the course are not very good. His current form is just decent. He has no tournament course history at Plainfield CC. Why is he on the list you ask? He is from the area (NJ) and is extremely motivated to play well in front of his family and friends. He wasn’t that great overall last year but he shot lights out at The Barclays finishing 9th. Being supremely motivated to do well can sometimes help golfers play better. It can also make some golfers play worse. Im going with the latter on this one but I’m not going to load up on him. You might see him on 10% of my lineups this week.
William McGirt ($6400):
McGirt was on my radar last week and ended up finishing a respectable 14th for the tournament. He has made five of his last six cuts with two Top 25 finishes. He finished 24th last time out at Plainfield CC and has good stats for the course. He’s 32nd in Prox, 47th in GIR, 27th in P4 scoring, 42nd in P3 scoring, 42nd in 3PA, and 45th in SG:T2G. Another Top 25 finish for him at Plainfield CC could very well happen again this week.
Jim Herman ($6300):
Herman was another one of my value picks that fared well last week and I think he can do it again. He has made his last three cuts and finished inside the Top 30 in all of them. He’s 13th in Prox, 2nd in GIR, 19th in P3 scoring, 9th in TD, and 66th in SG:T2G. If he can make a putt or two he can have another Top 30 finish under his belt after this week is through.
David Hearn ($6300):
Hearn has made his last four non Major cuts and made the cut the last time The Barclays was played at Plainfield CC. He’s definitely a risky pick but he has really good stats for the course, especially for his cheap price tag. He’s 60th in Prox, 78th in Prox (50+), 49th in GIR, 46th in P4 scoring, 42nd in P3 scoring, 15th in 3PA, and 35th in SG:P. Use him at your own risk but the stats say he should do well.
Shawn Stefani ($6200):
Stefani has made five out of his last six non Major cuts and has made eighteen of twenty-three total this year. Good cut numbers for a golfer of his price. His stats for the course are even better. He’s 88th in Prox, 33rd in GIR, 39th in P4 scoring, 33rd in 3PA, 25th in TD, 42nd in SG:T2G, and 77th in SG:P. He will be in a lot of my “Studs and Duds” lineups this week.
Extreme Value Picks (Under $6100)
Bryce Molder ($6000):
Bryce Molder is my favorite play at $6000 and under. His putting prowess can keep him in any tournament. He has made seventeen of twenty-two cuts total this year and ten of his last eleven. That is incredible cut making percentage for someone so cheap. His stats for the course are very good. He’s 67th in Prox, 13th in P4 scoring, 42nd in P3 scoring, 12th in 3PA, and 13th in SG:P. I will be using a combo of him and Stefani in almost all of my “Studs and Duds” lineups.
Kevin Streelman ($6000):
Streelman’s current form is not the best but his stats for the course are solid. He’s 22nd in GIR, 34th in P4 scoring, 45th in 3PA, 18th in TD, and 49th in SG:T2G. He will be in one or two of my lineups this week.
Mark Wilson ($5700):
Wilson has made his last four cuts on Tour and made the cut last time the tournament was held at Plainfield CC. His stats for the course are only slightly above average but he is strong in my three most important stats of the week. He’s 44th in Prox, 11th in Prox (50+), and 54th in GIR. I’m not going to use him in a ton of lineups but he will be in a couple.