What’s goin’ on fantasy golf fans?! I hope everyone jumped on Xander Schauffele last week in a big way and was able to make some money! Let’s hope we can strike gold again and find a winner in the golfer’s I have listed below.
The touring pros head to Silvis Illinois for the John Deere Classic, held at TPC Deere Run. The track is a 7,200 yard Par 71, with three Par 5s and four Par 3s. It is consistently played as one of the easiest courses on the PGA Tour, and scores will creep into the -20s. The greens are huge and fairways are wide, but if you miss by enough, the rough can become penial. Making birdies, and a ton of them, will be critical this week. That is why Birdie or Better Percentage, is my highest weighted stat this week. Strokes Gained Approach is a close second as golfers who are on with their iron play will be looking at makeable birdie putts all week long. I am also focusing on Proximity 100-150, as the majority of the approach shots will be from this 50 yard window. Par 4 scoring average and Good Drive Percentage will also be incorporated into my stats model. Now, to say this field is weak might be an overstatement. It is brutal. But that doesn’t mean we can’t figure out which scrub is the best of them all!
Alright, let’s get to the picks!
My favorite golfers for the week – for Cash and GPP contests.
Danny Lee – $10,200
This slate is ugly folks. You definitely didn’t need to be reminded of this, but it may be a good week to scale back the exposure. Regardless! Danny Lee is my favourite play on the board. He is the obvious next in line guy to pick up win, with top 10 finishes in two of his last three events. Lee leads the field in strokes gained total, DraftKings points and is second in strokes gained approach over his last 12 rounds. It is highly unlikely his run of amazing form will run out this week at the John Deere, an event he has success at in the past. Danny Lee will be the first person placed in my cash lineup this week.
Kyle Stanley – $9,600
The monkey is finally off Kyle Stanley’s back. He picked up his first win in five years at the Quicken Loans National, a result we all had a feeling was coming sooner rather than later. It will be interesting to see how he returns off of a win, but seeing how he reacted after his win, he seems emotionally invested and hungry for more. Stanley has been a stat God all season long and almost completes a full sweep in terms of key stats for this week, ranking inside the top 10 in each. If he putter can be just average for another four rounds, Stanley has a good chance of going back-to-back.
Chez Reavie – $8,400
You know it’s an ugly slate when Chez Reavie is not only $8,400, but also a great play. Reavie comes in ranked 4th in my weighted rankings, driven by his impressive stats and solid recent form. Over his past 12 rounds, Reavie ranks 6th in the field in SG:APP and 11th in SG:TOT. For the season, he ranks 2nd in Good Drive % and 7th in Par 4 scoring. It won’t feel good to pencil Reavie into your cash game lineup as one of your more expensive golfers, but he is head and shoulder above most of this field in terms of stats.
Nick Taylor – $7,600
Nick Taylor’s name has been popping up quite a bit on the leaderboard lately. He has gotten off to hot starts in both of his last two events, and unable to find another low round in him to propel him to the top of the board. He gained 4.2 strokes on approach shots last week at the Greenbrier, continuing his solid run of iron play. Taylor’s course history could scare people off of him which is great, because in each of his last two seasons, he was showing nothing close to the form he is showing now. Taylor is in a busy price range with plenty of popular options, so his ownership will not get out of hand. He is my pick for the next Canadian golfer to pick up a win on tour.
Michael Kim – $6,900
Michael Kim surprisingly pops up this week, ranking 13th in my weighted stats model. He ranks 20th in BoB%, 14th in Par 4 Scoring and has an amazing approach game from 150 yards and in. In his last 12 rounds, Kim ranks 14th in the field in SG:APP and 13th in SG:T2G. Kim has made six of his last seven cuts, including a T29 last week at the Greenbrier. His recent results are trending in the right direction and if he can put himself in situations where he has a wedge into the green (should be often), Kim could make a run at winning the John Deere Classic.
Identifying the chalk, and going elsewhere.
Charley Hoffman – $9,700
In a field of this magnitude (or lack thereof) figuring out the top tiered golfers that will be underowned is crucial. Charley Hoffman is shaping up to be that golfer this week. With only 15 tags on FanShareSports, he has the third fewest out of anyone priced above $9K. Hoffman’s recent form is incredible, with an 8th place finish at the U.S. Open followed by a T3 at the Travelers. Maybe it only took a couple weeks off to forget what Charley has been up to?
Jamie Lovemark – $9,300
Jamie Lovemark is another golfer who is being ignored in the $9K range. His price jumped up $1,000 from last week, but his tags have not done the same despite his T3 finish at the Greenbrier. He only has eight tags on FanShareSports so far this week. His play recently has been elite. Lovemark has gained over nine strokes T2G in three of his last five starts. He showed his ability to contend in these weaker field events and has come up short a few times now. If he keeps knocking on the door, eventually some of those make or break putts will begin to fall.
David Hearn – $8,200
The mid to low $8K range will be loaded with chalky plays this week. Cauley, Reavie, Martin and Na are all hoarding the tags on FanShareSports, allowing for David Hearn to fly under the radar. His price is steeper than we are use too, and the last time he was priced above $8,000 he missed the cut. However, Hearn does have three top 15 finishes in his last four outings, gaining over seven strokes total in those three results. He also has a runner up finish at this event back in 2012. If you want to completely fade the chalk in the low $8K range and cannot stomach to roster Bubba Watson, Hearn is your best bet.
William McGirt – $7,700
William McGirt has had a less than stellar season so far, rarely finding his way inside the top 20. However, we saw this last year, he is more than capable of contending any given week, especially in a field of this caliber. McGirt is always been steady off the tee, ranking very well in Good Drive %. If he can dial in his approach game and putt average to the field, he will be in great shape this week. His last time out at the Travelers was a positive sign, gaining strokes in all categories other than putting. If you want to make a pivot play off of the uber popular Kelly Kraft, McGirt at the exact same price makes for a great leverage play.
John Deere Classic Research Spreadsheet
Note that this spreadsheet is FREE each week for Pro Members. If you are not a Pro Member, use code “ERIC” for 15% off:
[ess_grid alias=”PGA Packages”]
Bad course fit? Highly owned for the wrong reason? Players I will have no shares of.
Steve Stricker – $9,800
Old man Stricker not only finds himself as the fifth most expensive golfer this week, but he is also the second most tagged golfer on FanShareSports.com. Maybe the hype has gone a little too far? I get that Stricker won this event three years in a row, but his last two trips to TPC Deere Run have been fairly mediocre. If Stricker ends up being one of the highest owned golfers of the slate at an insanely high price, you have to fade him. The likelihood of Stricker finishing in the T30 range is much greater than a result that would return any sort of value.
Bubba Watson – $8,100
Bubba is broken. It’s that simple. There is no scenario where rostering Bubba makes sense or would feel right. His flash in the pan at the Memorial was clearly a one off, as he has followed up that performance with two missed cuts and a T70 last week at the Greenbrier. His name value is currently driving up his price. If you looked at a list of player’s stats, form and DK price, without revealing any golfer’s name, Bubba’s ownership would be 0%.
Kelly Kraft – $7,700
Where did all the Kelly Kraft backers come from? The Kraft bandwagon is packed right now – he is surprisingly leading the way on FanShareSports when it comes to “start” calls. This is a similar situation to Steve Stricker where I think the ownership will be way too high to roster in larger GPPs. Kraft has been playing much better lately, coming 5th last week at the Greenbrier. He also came T5 at the John Deere Classic last year. But, he is still the same golfer who has missed nine of his last twelve cuts. Last week, he gained 10.9 strokes on approach shots, 10.8 shots better than his career average. Seems like regression is imminent.
So, you got burned?
Recently got screwed by a missed cut or a poor performance? Looks like a good time to jump back on.
Kevin Kisner – $10,400
Yup, Kisner roasted me last week and the burn is still lingering. He was my favorite play on the board, along with many others across the industry. Kisner garnered plenty of ownership last week, and it’s clear people are getting off of him. He is the least tagged golfer in the $10K range on FanShareSports, even though his stats are still elite for this field. Kisner ranks second in strokes gained total in the field over the last 12 rounds. He isn’t the safest cash play on the board this week, but if Kisner is going to be the lowest owned golfer out of the top tier in this tournament, he has to be rostered in GPPs.
Ollie Schniederjans – $7,400
The curious case of Ollie Schniederjans DQ last week at the Greenbrier was clarified when he stated he signed an incorrect scorecard. He still would have missed the cut by a shot, but regardless, people were left with a dead spot in their lineup if they had rostered Ollie. He has turned into a solid cut maker in the past couple of months, with last week the first time he hasn’t played on the weekend in eight events. Ollie is also one of the best birdie makers in this field, which will become extremely important when this event inevitably becomes a shootout.
Sean O’Hair – $7,100
Sean O’Hair gained a lot of attention on FanShareSports last week when he was priced at $8,100. His missed cut at the Greenbrier has made people quickly forget why they liked him so much. Now with only two tags on FanShare, O’Hair is in a perfect spot to bounce back and burn all the people that moved on. Over his past 12 rounds, O’Hair has been playing extremely well, ranking 13th in strokes gained total in the field. Don’t turn the page too quickly on O’Hair who also makes for a great pivot play off of Wesley Bryan.
Thanks for reading The John Deere Classic preview article! You can follow me on Twitter @EPattersonFS for more golf and betting talk! Also, make sure you check out @FanShareSports. They track and curate content produced across the DFS Golf industry, and highlight which players are being tagged or talked about the most, translating to an excellent ownership guide.
Good luck this week everybody!!