DraftKings PGA Preview: The Northern Trust Open
DraftKings has only seven golfers priced at $9,500 or above this week for the first playoff event. Brooks Koepka is far and away the highest-priced golfer at $12,000. Rory McIlroy ($11,400) is the only other golfer in the $11-12k range. Dustin Johnson ($10,700), Jon Rahm ($10,400), and Justin Thomas ($10,000) round out the golfers with five-figure salaries. DraftKings provides you with $50,000 to select six golfers for an average roster spot of $8,333.
All of the tips and information that I mention in this article are plays that I will be considering for my own lineups. However, that doesn’t mean that I will end up with all of the guys that I mention. This article is written early in the week and additional news, research, and roster construction could lead me to different plays. Use all the information available to you to make the best decision possible for your lineup. Good luck and, most importantly, have fun! Whether you win or lose, golf is one of the most entertaining fantasy sports to follow because you get four days of action.
This is the first of three FedEx Cup Playoff events and will be played in New Jersey, just outside of New York City at the Liberty National Golf Course. Liberty is a Par 71 course measuring 7,370 yards. The bent grass fairways are narrow (26 yards on average). The bent grass greens are on the smaller side (averaging 3,400 square feet). The greens tend to roll pretty true and accurate as they are fast and firm.
This course hosted the 2009 and 2013 Barclays as well as the 2017 President’s Cup. Heath Slocum defeated Tiger Woods in 2009 with a score of nine-under-par. The cut line was six-over-par. The 2013 Barclays was won by Adam Scott with a score of 11-under par. He defeated Justin Rose, Gary Woodland, and Tiger Woods by one shot. The cut line was one-over-par.
FAVORITE $9,000+ PLAYS
Jon Rahm ($10,400)
He is third in fantasy scoring in the last 24 rounds played. In his last five events, his finishes have been seventh, T11, Win, T2, and T3. Additionally, in 2017, he had top-10s in all four playoff events.
Webb Simpson ($9,400)
In the last 24 rounds, he is second in fantasy scoring and first in total shots gained. He has nine straight top-30 finishes, which includes four top-five finishes. His finish at the Wyndham gave him a third runner-up in the last five events.
FAVORITE $8,000 PLAYS
Bryson DeChambeau ($8,600)
Yes, he only finished T48 at the recent WGC and missed the cut at the Open, but he was T2 and T8 the two events previously, so he still has the ability to find the leaderboard. I am going to bet on his overall talent and upside. He won the first two events in last year’s playoffs. He won back-to-back despite missing the cut and finishing 30th in his two events prior to the playoffs. Technically, he is the defending champion of this event, but it was held at a different course last year.
Billy Horschel ($8,000)
This is the 2014 FedEx Cup Champion’s time of year. Last year he finished second or third in all the playoff events except for the Dell, where he withdrew early because he was sick. Last week at the Wyndham, he finished T6, which was on the heels of a T9 at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude. He has seven top-25 finishes in his last nine events.
FAVORITE $7,000 PLAYS
Shane Lowry ($7,900)
His win at the Open Championship was his fourth top-10 finish in his last seven events. He also comes in with five straight made cuts worldwide.
Rory Sabbatini ($7,700)
Sabbs continues to have a stellar year. His T6 finish at the Wyndham gave him his 10th top-20 finish this season. It was also the 15th time he made it to the weekend in his last 16 events. In the last 24 rounds played, he is 12th in fantasy scoring but is only the 29th most-expensive golfer this week.
Joaquin Niemann ($7,500)
He has made the cut in eight of his last nine events (missed the Open Championship). During that stretch, he has three top-10 finishes. He finished T13 last week at the Wyndham. In the last 24 rounds, he is sixth in total shots gained and seventh in fantasy scoring in this field, yet is only the 36th most expensive golfer on DK.
Andrew Putnam ($7,400)
He has made the cut in eight straight events worldwide. He was T4 three weeks ago at a loaded Scottish Open before back-to-back top-35 finishes at the Open Championship and the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Classic. He also finished T17 at the Memorial and T3 at the Charles Schwab back in May. In last year’s playoffs, he made the cut in the first two events and then finished T16 at the BMW.
FAVORITE $6,000 PLAYS
Brice Garnett ($6,800)
Five straight made cuts, including four top-25 finishes. He was on the leaderboard the entire tournament last week at the Wyndham, ultimately finishing T6. Unfortunately, he missed the cut at the Northern Trust last year but followed it up with a T12 at the Dell Technologies and a T35 at the BMW, so he has demonstrated an ability to play well in the playoffs.
Vaughn Taylor ($6,700)
After last week’s Wyndham, he has now played the weekend in eight straight events and 13 of his last 16. In the 2019 calendar year, he has seven top-20 finishes. This summer he has finished fourth at the Travelers and T6 at the John Deere. Among the players in this field, he is ranked in the top-25 for fantasy scoring and total shots gained.
Jamy Bechler is a regular contributor to FantasyPros for NBA, NFL, and PGA. You can follow him on his DFS twitter @WinningDFS101. When he is not playing DFS, Jamy is an author, host of the “Success is a Choice” podcast, and is a leadership trainer, working with businesses and teams across the country (including the NBA). Even though he offers his advice on players and contests, after additional information and consideration, he may end up using different players and strategies than what he recommends.