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PGA Preview: Shriners Open

Oct 2, 2019

For the price, Howell is an excellent play this weekend

Viva Las Vegas! The PGA Tour makes its’ way to Las Vegas for the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. The field is extremely strong for a Fall Swing Season event. Seeing his first action of the season, the world’s number one player, Brooks Koepka, is the most expensive player on both DraftKings ($11,700) and FanDuel ($12,200). Patrick Cantlay ($11,100-DK; $11,800-FD) is the second highest priced player. The same five golfers are among the most-expensive on both sites. Bryson DeChambeau ($10,700-DK, $11,600-FD), Webb Simpson ($10,200-DK; $11,300), and Adam Scott ($10,000-DK; $11,400-FD) round out the top five golfers. DraftKings gives you $50,000 to select six golfers (average roster spot of $8,333), whereas FanDuel provides you with $60,000 to select six golfers for an average roster spot of $10,000.

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Tournament Notes

  • The tournament is played at the TPC Summerlin course in Las Vegas. The par-71 course measures 7,255 yard and has hosted the event since 2008.
  • The bentgrass greens are larger than normal. The course itself is not very tricky and can be conquered by many different types of players as it plays as one of the easiest on tour. The high altitude also allows short hitters to hit the ball farther than normal.
  • The winning score has been 20-under par the last 11 years and that includes the weather impacted event two years ago that Patrick Cantlay won at 9-under par.
  • There are 144 players scheduled to tee it up this week with the top 65 (and ties) making the cut.
  • Kevin Streelman has made nine straight cuts at the Schriners Open. Webb Simpson, making his first start of the young season, has made the cut in six straight Shriners, including a win. Scott Piercy has made the cut in nine of the last 10 Shriners Open, including five straight.
  • Past winners in the field include Bryson DeChambeau (2018-19 season), Patrick Cantlay (‘17-‘18), Rod Pampling (‘16-‘17), Smylie Kaufman (‘15-‘16), Webb Simpson (‘13-‘14), Ryan Moore (‘12-‘13), Kevin Na (‘11-‘12), and Martin Laird (’09-’10)
  • There is a strong Las Vegas contingent in this tournament. Adam Scott, Ryan Moore, Charley Hoffman, and Kurt Kitayama played at UNLV. Wyndham Clark, Aaron Wise, Collin Morikawa, Kevin Na, Nick Watney, and Scott Piercy are all Vegas natives or current residents.
  • Patrick Cantlay, Bryson DeChambeau, Lucas Glover, and Chesson Hadley have finished in the top 10 in their last two Shriners Open events.
  • Tony Finau and Dylan Frittelli are the only players with top-10 finishes in their last two PGA Tour events.
  • Last week’s top-10 proved just how much variance is in golf as only three of the top-12 finishers had double-figure ownership.
    1) Cameron Champ (4.37%)
    2) Adam Hadwin (7.84%)
    3) Marc Leishman (2.09%)
    T4) Charles Howell (7.94%)
    T4) Zac Blair (0.22%)
    T4) Justin Thomas (21.66%)
    T7) Dylan Frittelli (17.25%)
    T7) Cameron Percy (4.56%)
    T7) Xin-Jun Zhang (0.44%)
    T10) Nick Watney (1.30%)
    T10) Collin Morikawa (20.40%)
    T10) Nick Taylor (1.32%)

Favorite High-Tier Play

Adam Scott ($10,000-DK; $11,400-FD)
In the last 36 rounds, nobody has scored more fantasy points than Adam Scott. He is third in total shots gained during that time. He has never played in this tournament but did play at UNLV so he should be familiar with the weather, altitude, and environment. He knocked some rust off last week at the Safeway finishing T17. He has top-20 finishes in 14 of his last 20 events, including a sixth-place finish at the TOUR Championship.

Favorite Mid-Tier Play

Charles Howell ($8,500-DK; $9,900-FD)
Charles Howell has had a lot of success playing on the West Coast (Las Vegas is close enough in my book). He also tends to do well during the fall and winter (West Coast). He has made seven of his last eight cuts here, including five top-20 finishes. As for recent form, he has played the weekend in eight of his last nine events, including the TOUR Championship and a T4 last week. 

Favorite Lower-Tier Play

Lanto Griffin ($7,200-DK; $8,600-FD)
He has three straight top-20 finishes to start the season. Overall, he has made the cut in 15 of his last 18 events. This includes a win, runner-up, T4, and a T7 at the Korn Ferry Tour Championship. In the last 12 rounds played, he is second in total strokes gained and third in fantasy scoring.

Favorite Punt Play

Mark Hubbard ($6,400-DK; $7,700-FD)
He has six top-25 finishes in his last eight events, including a T13 last week and a T10 at the Greenbrier. He also finished fourth in his last Korn Ferry Tour event. Overall, he has made the cut in 13 of his last 15 events. There is no guarantee when you get down this cheap, but he is an interesting option. Doc Redman ($6,500-DK; $7,800-FD) is also a guy that I’ve been playing at a higher price tag that I’m excited about getting a discount on.

Favorite Core Play

Scottie Scheffler ($8,800-DK; $10,200-FD)
I will be including Scheffler in the majority of my lineups. He dominated the Korn Ferry Tour this past year and shown that he belongs on the PGA Tour with a T16 at Sanderson Farms and a T7 at the Greenbrier. He has an all-around game. In the last 8 rounds played, he is in the top five strokes gained categories for Tee-to-Green, Ball-Striking, Off-the-Tee, and Approach. He is also third in fantasy scoring. In his first two starts of the year, he has been lights out in the first two rounds but has struggled a little bit on the weekend or he might have already been a winner on Tour.

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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 a leadership consultant, 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 recommended in this article.

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