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2021 Sanderson Farms Championship DraftKings fantasy golf picks

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After a one-week break for the Ryder Cup, the fall swing is back in gear, and players will be traveling to Jackson, Mississippi, this week for the Sanderson Farms Championship. Albeit under different title sponsors, this tournament has been part of the PGA Tour schedule since 1968, although it has only been played at the current host course, the Country Club of Jackson, since 2015.

While many of the world’s best players will be opting to rest up after the Ryder Cup, Sergio Garica is making the trek from Wisconsin to defend last year’s title. Other notables include Sam Burns, Sungjae Im, Will Zalatoris, and Corey Conners. The field is about what we’ve come to expect for fall series events. While there may be a lack of elite talent at the top, there is still an abundance of capable players in the middle to lower tiers of this field.

As far as the task at hand, the Country Club of Jackson is stock par 72, measuring 7,461 yards with Bermuda-grass fairways, greens, and rough. Perusing through previous iterations of this tournament, it’s fairly evident that there is no set way to succeed at this course. We’ve seen bombers win. We’ve seen ultra-accurate fairway finders win. We’ve seen both short and inaccurate drivers be able to mask off-the-tee inefficiencies with elite iron play, and we’ve also seen the player who simply rolls in the most 20-footers win this tournament as well.

For that reason, I am not entirely caught up in finding specialists at a specific skill set. I’m more so looking for players that can make a ton of birdies, are in good form, and have experienced success on Bermuda-grass greens. Given the wide range of skill sets in play here, I would definitely favor recent form this week over course fit.

Let’s dig into my DraftKings picks!

Top 2021 Sanderson Farms Championship PGA DFS picks

$10,000 range 

Will Zalatoris, $10,800 (22.99% projected ownership)

I’ve already expressed my love for Zalatoris in the betting article, and while I rarely endorse players above 20 percent ownership, the top of the board is a little strange this week as this field is lacking in elite talent. Every player above $10,000 is projected to garner over 14 percent ownership, so there isn’t really a clear pivot. My suggestion would be for fantasy managers to just select their preferred option and differentiate farther down the board. Corey Conners would be my second favorite play, and he is actually garnering 28.3 percent projected ownership. I think it’s worth paying up for Zalatoris this week, as he will be the centerpiece of the majority of my lineups.

$9,000 range

Charley Hoffman, $9,000 (11.91% projected ownership)

I’m a little surprised that Charley Hoffman is only $9,000 this week considering he is as low as 20/1 at some sports books. Conversely, I thought that Hoffman would also be one of the most popular golfers on the slate because of the modest price tag. It actually seems like fantasy managers are skipping the $9,000 range entirely when we remove Mito Pereira from the equation. Pereira is $9,900 and carrying 18.29 percent projected ownership, yet no one else in this range is over 12 percent. Everything seems to be spread out between players like Hoffman, Si Woo Kim, Cameron Tringale, Cameron Davis, Harold Varner, and Keegan Bradley. Not only is Hoffman the cheapest option of that bunch, but he is also the player I am highest on.

$8,000 range

Carlos Ortiz, $8,600 (9.42% projected ownership)

Carlos Ortiz just narrowly missed a selection on my outright card, but I will gladly deploy the former Houston Open winner in DraftKings. In three appearances at the Country Club of Jackson, Ortiz has both a third and fourth-place finish. His success here certainly makes sense, as over his last 36 rounds, Ortiz is the number one player in this field from 125-150 yards, a range where 20 percent of the approach shots from C.C. of Jackson come from.

$7,000 range

Chez Reavie, $7,700 (5.25% projected ownership)

I am playing a lot of bombers this week, so Chez Reavie is a nice change-up to represent the Ryan Armour and Cody Gribble crowd who have also experienced a great deal of success at the Country Club of Jackson. Despite ranking 134th out of 144 players in driving distance, Reavie ranks 14th in strokes gained off the tee. Translation? Despite being one of the shortest players on Tour, he is so hyper-accurate that his driver is still a weapon. The two-time PGA Tour winner has also been percolating with his irons. Reavie is coming off a week at the Fortinet Championship where he gained 5.3 strokes on approach. The ownership is pretty spread out in this range, but snagging Reavie at 5 percent still feels like a steal.

$6,000 range

Adam Schenk, $6,700 (2.20% projected ownership) 

For his price both in the betting market and on DraftKings, Adam Schenk is my favorite play on the board. I cannot understand why he is so cheap, but I will gladly plug the Indiana native into the majority of my lineups. Schenk is coming off a performance at the Fortinet Championship where he gained 2.5 strokes off the tee and 1.9 strokes on approach. That was actually Schenk’s best off-the-tee week in nearly a year. His ball-striking is trending positively, and he has a tendency to play his best golf on tracks that cater to lower scoring.

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Morning 9: Zalatoris’ heavy heart | Augusta makes hole alteration | Norman rips OWGR

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco.

For comments: [email protected]

Good Tuesday morning, golf fans, as the PGA Tour heads to Mexico this week.

1. ICYMI: Zalatoris’ finished 2nd with a heavy heart

Cameron Morfit for PGATour.com…”He’d been asked about his emotions, and the question landed heavier than anyone could have expected.”

  • “I didn’t say anything all week,” Zalatoris said, “but I – sorry.”
  • “The tears welled up, the silence expanding. Zalatoris had shot a final-round 69 to tie for second…”
  • “The runner-up finish was a long time coming, his best result since coming back from career-threatening back surgery last year…”
  • “I lost a family member on Thursday,” Zalatoris said, “and she was – so she was with me all week. You know, was pretty special on Friday to make the hole-in-one after – sorry. Pretty special to make the hole-in-one on Friday after I found out on Thursday. She was with me all week.”
Full piece.

2. A signature win for a Signature Event

Golf Digest’s Tod Leonard…“What transpired on Sunday at Riviera Country Club is exactly how world-class golf tournaments are supposed to play out. A major champion from a golf-crazed country crafts a mind-boggling charge on a classic track to win a grand prize.”

  • “That’s a mouthful, but there was so much to admire about Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama coming from six shots down at the outset and shooting nine-under-par 62 for a stunning three-shot victory in the Genesis Invitational. The 31-year-old from Japan took home, by far, the biggest cash prize of his career of $4 million because this was a $20 million signature event on the PGA Tour.”
  • “It doesn’t get much more “signature” than what Matsuyama did on the back nine at Riviera—twice hitting approaches to a few inches from the hole among his six birdies in a back nine of 30. What’s more, Matsuyama came within inches on his birdie putt at 18 of setting the course record at vaunted Hogan’s Alley.”
Full piece.

3. ICYMI: Cantlay ill at Riviera

PGATour.com staff report…”Cantlay struggled to find a rhythm Sunday while playing in the final group at Riviera alongside close friend Xander Schauffele, who shot 70 to share fourth place with Cantlay and Adam Hadwin.”

  • “Following the final round of The Genesis, Golf Channel analyst Johnson Wagner shared that Cantlay woke up Sunday with a temperature exceeding 100 degrees and some sort of illness, per Cantlay’s coach Jamie Mulligan.”
  • “Cantlay didn’t meet the media after the final round, saying he was feeling under the weather.”
Full piece.

4. LIV golfers head to Asia

SI’s Bob Harig…”The first International Series event of the year takes place this week in Oman and the event will have a slew of LIV Golf players competing a week before they are all scheduled to play consecutive tournaments in Jeddah and Hong Kong.”

  • “The International Series consists of 10 elevated events that are part of the Asian Tour and are funded by LIV Golf Investments. All will have a minimum purse of $2 million and the leader of the Order of Merit earns a fully exempt spot with LIV Golf next year.”
  • …”As of now, there are 21 LIV Golf players in the field, including Joaquin Niemann, who won the first LIV Golf event of the year two weeks ago and has been trying to qualify for the Masters via the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking.”
Full piece.
5. Pro asks Tiger to fix hole at Riv

6. Rory’s putting advice for Scottie? Try a mallet

Drew Powell for Golf Digest…”During a week when no one hit the ball better or chipped better, Scheffler made just three putts outside of 10 feet. His week was best encapsulated by the 18th hole on Sunday, where he hit a towering iron shot to 10 feet on one of the toughest holes on the course, only to badly misjudge the speed on the putt, never giving it a chance.

  • “That miss prompted CBS Sports’ Amanda Renner to ask Rory McIlroy—who was joining the telecast after finishing his round—what advice he would have for Scheffler as he works through his putting struggles.”
  • “I’ve certainly been through my fair share of putting woes over the years, and I finally feel like I’ve broken through and become a pretty consistent putter,” McIlroy said. He was in a similar position to Scheffler back in the mid-2010s, hitting the ball beautifully but ranking outside the top 100 on tour in putting.
  • “For me, going to a mallet was a big change,” McIlroy said said after a final-round 70 at Riviera. “I really persisted with the blade putter for a long time, but I just feel like your stroke has to be so perfect to start the ball on line, where the mallet just gives you a little bit more margin for error.
  • “So, I’d love to see Scottie try a mallet,” McIlroy concluded. “But selfishly for me, Scottie does everything else so well that he’s given the rest of us a chance.”
Full Piece.

7. Augusta makes one change for 2024 Masters

Mike Hall for Golf Monthly…”With The Masters less than two months away, it has been confirmed that the second hole at Augusta National will be longer by 10 yards for the 2024 tournament.”

  • “Pink Dogwood is a par-5 dogleg left that, despite the presence of bunkers on the right-hand fairway and around the green, offers an early scoring opportunity for players, helped by its downward slope.”
  • “That was generally the case in 2023, too, when it was the easiest hole over the four days. However, it may prove a touch more challenging this year, with the length of the hole now increased from 575 yards to 585 yards.”
Full Piece.

8. Hideki nets gambler huge win

9. Norman once again rips ‘laughable’ OWGR

Ben Parsons for Bunkered…”The Aussie chief posted an image on Instagram of the OWGR top 50 compared to rankings made by Sports Illustrated, The Universal Golf Ranking and Data Golf.”

  • “LIV currently has five players in the official top 50, but three of those were the marquee signings during the recent off-season in European trio Jon Rahm, Tyrrell Hatton and Adrian Meronk.”
  • “The alternate top 50 lists include more LIV names, including Talor Gooch, who won the circuit’s individual prize last season but is down in 408 in the rankings.”
Full Piece.
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Tour Rundown: The cruelest month

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April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
The opening verses to “The Waste Land” might be applied to the late-February, early-March stretch of professional golf. Rarely are there four or five events to cover. Were it not for the PGA Tour’s reliability, we might go a fortnight without much to discuss. Whatever lilacs are offered, we will receive them with gratitude and hope. We’ll also consider three events that settled matters this week, in our February 19th edition of Tour Rundown.

PGA Tour @ Genesis Invitational: Hideki’s unexpected surge delivers 9th Tour title

Hideki Matsuyama had previously won eight times on the US PGA Tour. His most recent victory came two years ago, in Hawaii. The massive talent of the 2021 Masters champion lay in wait, hibernating like a great bear. On Sunday, along Hogan’s Alley, it emerged from its slumber.

Matsuyama began Sunday with birdies at each of the first three holes. He motored through the remaining six holes of the outward half with pars, then struck thrice again, at holes 10 through 12. Over the closing stretch, Hideki was once again composed and precise. Birdies at 15, 16, and 17 were blended with pars at the rest, for an incomprehensible 62. The total was one off the course record of 61, set by Ted Tryba in 1997.

Matsuyama teed off at 1:42, local time, three groups behind Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele. Neither of the leaders made any noise on Sunday, which relegated them to pleasant, top-five finishes. Cantlay was one-over 72 on the day, while Schauffele went one-under 70, to tie him and Adam Hadwin at fourth spot. They finished four shots back of the champion.

Making wee moves on Sunday were Will Zalatoris and Luke List. The pair teed off together at 2:04, in the penultimate group. Their play, combined with the missteps of Schauffele and Cantlay, might have brought them to the top of the podium. Instead, they ended tied for second at 14-under par, three behind the victor.

This win will certainly set minds a-whirring and tongues a-wagging, as the Players Championship and Masters approach. Matsuyama will be thrust into the role of favorite at one or both, given the precise and somewhat-penal nature of Riviera. A course that has never recognized Nicklaus nor Woods as champion, is certainly some sort of other-world test. For Matsuyama, it is assurance that his strategy and execution are strong, and that his role is once again that of feared entrant.

Asian Tour @ Malaysian Open: Puig escapes pursuers with Sunday 62 

David Puig and Jon Rahm have at least three things in common: they are Spanish, they spent time at Arizona State, and each abandoned PGA Tour potential for another league. On Sunday in Malaysia, Puig added a note to his wiki page that Rahm cannot claim: Malaysian Open champion. Puig played the weekend in 124 strokes (62-62) to secure a two-shot win, his second in four months on the Asian Tour.

If it were not for Puig’s pyrotechnics, the headline of this section might have focused on Jeunghun Wang or Denwit Boriboonsub. The Korean and Malaysian (respectively) contestants each signed for an extraterrestrial score of 61 at The Mines. They reached 21 and 20-deep, with Wang claiming solo second, and Boriboonsub finishing tied with John Catlin of the USA for third.

Puig made the 36-hole cut on the number, then found lightning in a bottle, to earn a spot at The Open in July at Royal Troon.

PGA Tour Champions @ Chubb Classic: Rains crown Ames as Chubb champion

For the second time in February, Mother Nature decreed that a US Tour event would not see its expected completion. Following Wyndham Clark’s 54-hole triumph at Pebble Beach, Stephen Ames received the unanticipated gift of a 36-hole title at Florida’s Tiburon Golf Club.

Ames positioned himself for a Sunday battle with a Saturday 64. His work included nine birdies and an inexplicable bogey at the par-five 16th hole. His day-two performance moved him four shots up the ladder, past first-round leader Rocco Mediate. Mediate’s second-round score of 71 was marred by two bogies and a double. He anticipated a final-day battle with Ames and his other pursuers, but that day never came.

The PGA Tour Champions moves across the waters to the Trophy Hassan II in Morocco, then returns stateside, three weeks later, for Arizona’s Cologuard Classic.

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Morning 9: Cantlay leads Genesis | Tiger suffers spasms, shoots 72 | Genesis photos

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco.

For comments: [email protected]

Good Friday morning, golf fans, as day two of the Genesis Invitational gets underway.

1. Cantlay leads Genesis

AP report…”Thousands of fans watching Tiger Woods in his 2024 debut missed out on the best golf Thursday at the Genesis Invitational. In the group ahead of Woods was Patrick Cantlay, looking as though he wants to be the next Southern California native to win at Riviera.

  • “Cantlay opened with three birdies in four holes and never really slowed until a sycamore tree halted his great run. He still managed a 7-under 64, giving him a one-shot lead.”
Full piece.

2. Tiger suffers with back spasms, shoots 72

Mark Schlabach for ESPN…”Woods, making his 2024 season debut and his first start in an official PGA Tour event since the Masters in April, said he was suffering back spasms during the last few holes at Riviera Country Club.”

  • “When Woods attempted to hit an 8-iron from the right side of the 18th fairway, his back locked up. His ball rocketed dead right into a eucalyptus tree and came to a rest behind four trees.”
  • “Well, my back was spasming the last couple holes and it was locking up,” Woods said. “I came down and it didn’t move, and I presented [the] hosel first and shanked it.”
  • “Somehow, Woods was able to hit his third shot onto the green. He two-putted for bogey. It was a disappointing finish to his round, leaving him at 1-over 72. He was tied for 49th, eight shots behind first round leader Patrick Cantlay.”
Full piece.

3. Tiger: We don’t need PIF money (but it’d be nice to have it)

Our Matt Vincenzi…”In Tiger Woods pre-tournament press conference for the Genesis Invitational, he touched on many topics including a potential deal between the PGA Tour and the PIF.”

  • “The PGA Tour received roughly 1.1 billion dollars from the Strategic Sports Group which also includes a possibility for a future “co-investment” from the Saudi PIF, but according to Woods, the Tour may no longer need that additional investment.”
  • “Financially, we don’t right now, and the monies that they have come to the table with and what we initially had agreed to in the framework agreement, those are all the same numbers.
  • “Anything beyond this is going to be obviously over and above.”
  • “Woods added that while the PGA Tour doesn’t necessarily need the additional investment, they are still open to dealing with the PIF and negotiations are ongoing.”
  • “Ultimately we would like to have PIF be a part of our tour and a part of our product.
Full piece.

4. Why Tiger remains appointment viewing

Jay Rigdon for the Fried Egg…”Now, nearly thirty years later, Tiger remains appointment viewing. Not like at his peak, when you turned golf on because he was kicking ass on a weekly basis. But because, well, who the hell knows what it will look like? There’s no benchmark. We can get clubhead speed numbers and Trackman data and reports from playing partners about how he looks good again. We also don’t yet know if he’ll be able to handle walking for four days. One thing is certain: we aren’t going to get a straight answer from him. I think that Tiger Woods, more than any other athlete, lives by the George Costanza mantra of “It’s not a lie if you believe it.”

  • “It’s an ability to construct whatever narrative he needs to succeed at whatever he’s trying to accomplish, while blocking out anything that contradicts that reality. He occasionally carries it through to the point of complete detachment from the world in which everyone else is living. It’s what gave him his singular competitive edge that, paired with unworldly physical gifts, allowed him to tame golf to a degree no one has or likely ever will match. It also means that we truly have no idea how healthy he is, or what any realistic expectations should be. But Tiger is playing the one sport best-positioned to give us a view of where he’s at now. He won’t be coming off the bench on a minutes restriction. He won’t have to fit in with a new team or worry about where shots or snaps or at-bats are coming from. The scorecard won’t lie. Tiger is going to go out and do what he’s done as often as he possibly could have for just about his entire life: play golf in front of an audience.”
Full piece.

5. Verne’s last Masters

Our Matt Vincenzi…”On Wednesday, Verne Lundquist announced that the 2024 Masters will be the last time he calls the event.”

  • “Lundquist has had some legendary calls at the Masters and his iconic voice is recognized by many generations. The 83-year-old retired from broadcasting football games back in 2016 but continued with the Masters through what will be his 40th time this year.”
Full piece.

6. DJ gave away his wedges after LIV win

Golfweek’s Adam Woodard…”After Dustin Johnson won the 2024 LIV Golf Las Vegas event this past weekend at Las Vegas Country Club, a couple of fans walked away with a pretty rare gift: his wedges.”

  • “Johnson was putting his clubs away when a few fans strolled by and congratulated him on his third win since joining the league led by Greg Norman and backed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund. They asked for a picture and got a little bit more.”
Full Piece.

7. Billy Ho on losing his cool

Our Matt Vincenzi…”This week, Horschel went on Sirius XM PGA Tour Radio to discuss why he lost his cool.”

  • “We’d just started our second round, we’re on the 11th hole and [Galletti] is over his second shot. We had told some fans over there to be quiet as he was about to hit. There were three or four guys over there that continued to talk and say some things.”
  • “They talked very loudly when he was over his shot, and I just feel like there was a loss of respect there. The guy is trying to play his shot, he’s trying to do his job. It’s the third day of the tournament and we hear a lot of different things.
  • “I just responded to it afterwards that I was displeased with the level of respect that was shown towards a fellow competitor while he is trying to hit a golf shot and compete in a golf tournament. And that’s just the simple fact of it.”
  • “Horschel shared his opinion that many seem to be in agreement with, that the event has crossed the line from fun to unenjoyable.”
  • “Has this tournament crossed the line? Yeah, I think the last couple of years have been a little much,” he added. “I think it has just got a little bit out of control. I just go back to the respect factor of it for what we’re trying to do in ours jobs.”
Full Piece.

8. LET star becomes latest sportsperson to announce OnlyFans partnership

GolfWRX report…”Ladies European Tour player Amy Boulden took to social media to announce that she is partnering with OnlyFans.”

  • “Collaborating with OnlyFans gives me the opportunity to connect directly with fans and bring my followers on the journey with me as I compete around the world,” Boulden said when announcing the launch.
  • “OnlyFans is revolutionising the way we use social media, so launching my page on the platform felt like a natural next step for my career.
  • “With women’s golf continuing to grow in popularity, OnlyFans feels like the perfect platform to showcase the sport globally.”
  • “Boulden has one European Tour win, the VP Bank Swiss Ladies Open back in 2020. She is the second professional golfer to partner with OnlyFans, as British golfer Liam O’Neill launched a partnership with the platform last year.”
Full Piece.

9. Photos from the Genesis

GolfWRX is on site this week at famed Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, California for the Genesis Invitational.

  • Tournament host Tiger Woods makes his 2024 debut — and speaking of debuts, GolfWRX already got a look at Woods’ new Sun Day Red apparel.
  • Beyond the 15-time major champion, there’s plenty to see in our photos this week from this Signature Event. Check out all our shots from Riv below, and see what GolfWRXers are saying in the forums.
Full Piece.
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