DraftKings Daily Fantasy Golf Helper: The Northern Trust
Daily fantasy golf requires a new approach for each and every event.
The course and field change week after week, making no two contests alike. That means you need to refine your approach for each PGA Tour event to try to find golfers who are primed to excel for your daily fantasy golf lineups.
Each week, we have a course primer, and our daily fantasy golf projections and lineup builder can help you get started, but these golfers stand out specifically on DraftKings for the Wyndham Championship.
This Week’s Course
The FedEx Cup Playoffs kick off with The Northern Trust at Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey. The 7,385-yard par 71 last hosted the first leg of the playoffs back in 2014 and had a very varied leaderboard that featured both precise iron players and scramblers. With limited history, overall tee-to-green play and performance on par 4s (which make up two thirds of the course) are the safest stats to key in on before digging too much deeper. From there, scrambling gained and proximity gained are complementary stats that can keep DFS players from getting married to one style of play. And, of course, putting always ends up being essential for both saving pars and making birdies.
|Key Stats for The Northern Trust at Ridgewood CC|
|Strokes Gained: Tee to Green|
|Strokes Gained: Par 4s|
|Strokes Gained: Putting|
Now, onto the picks.
All stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds, unless otherwise noted.
High Priced Studs
Justin Thomas (DraftKings Price $11,200 | PaddyPower Win Odds 12/1) - Statistically speaking, no one in the field can hold a candle to Dustin Johnson ($11,500 | 8). Thomas, however, has had the hot hand lately and is no slouch himself. JT is second in strokes gained: tee to green, strokes gained: par 4s, and birdies or better gained, and is third in proximity gained (guess who is first in all those categories). Thomas gets the edge in scrambling gained, where he ranks 11th to DJ’s 29th.
Jason Day ($10,700 | 11) - Day is 2nd in strokes gained: putting, 4th in strokes gained: par 4s, 5th in scrambling gained, and 10th in birdies or better gained. He has dominated the first leg of the playoffs with finishes of T6-T4-1-T2 his last four seasons. The T2 was in 2014 when Ridgewood hosted what was then called The Barclays, where he scored -5 on the par 4s and gained 2.311 strokes putting, per PGATour.com.
Justin Rose ($9,900 | 16) - Rose has arguably been the most consistent golfer on Tour for more than a year, with just 2 finishes outside the top 25 in the last 12 months. He has won twice and placed in the top 25 at all four majors and the PLAYERS, so a strong field will not worry Rose one bit. He is second on par 4s, sixth tee to green, and seventh putting over the last 50 rounds, and comes at a steep discount. He may well be the highest-owned golfer once again this week.
Mid Priced Options
Webb Simpson ($9,200 | 30) - Simpson looks to cap off a tremendous season with a deep run into the FedEx Playoffs. He is just 33rd in strokes gained: tee to green, but he ranks 5th in putting and 6th in scrambling gained. Simpson hasn’t finished outside the top 25 in over a month and rode a Sunday 62 to a T2 finish last week at the Wyndham.
Hideki Matsuyama ($8,800 | 33) - Matsuyama doesn’t pop like some of the other golfers in this tier, with only one top-30 mark -- strokes gained: par 4s (ninth) -- among our key stats. That is mostly due to an early-season injury and an inability to get his game clicking once he got healthy. He missed the cut here last year as the uber chalk play while riding the hottest stretch of his career. It would be just like Hideki to shake off his so-so form and contend this year at low ownership.
Zach Johnson ($8,700 | 55) - ZJ remains steady as ever, ranking inside the top 35 in all of the key stats except putting, in which he is 45th. He has been hot with the short stick lately, though, as he ranks 7th if the range is narrowed to just the last 12 rounds. Some regression may be in order, but Johnson has shown long-term consistency and still ranks 14th in scrambling over his last 50 rounds.
Patrick Reed ($8,400 | 40) - After a strong spring and early summer, Reed’s form has dipped and his price on DraftKings has followed suit. At some point though, the value just becomes too good to pass up when it comes with elite upside and low ownership. Reed is 8th in strokes gained: par 4s, 15th in birdies or better gained, and 16th in scrambling gained. He was -7 on the par 4s here in 2014, per PGATour.com, en route to a T9 finish.
Matt Kuchar ($8,200 | 40) - The typically steady Kuchar has been a bit up-and-down of late, alternating top 25s with missed cuts over his last five events. He is 8th in scrambling gained and 22nd on par 4s over his last 50 rounds, and he placed T5 in 2014. Even with the inconsistent play, Kuchar is a safe cash game play to pair with Rose and still have plenty of salary left to fill out your roster.
Low Priced Options
Gary Woodland ($7,700 | 50) - Woodland stormed the field at the PGA Championship before stalling over the weekend and finishing T6, but he has to feel good about his form heading into the playoffs. He has 3 straight top 25s after having just 1 in the 11 starts since his win at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Woodland is 16th in strokes gained: tee to green and 39th in proximity gained. He is not known for his scrambling or putting, but he finished T13 and gained 1.195 strokes putting at The Barclays in 2014, per PGATour.com.
Kevin Na ($7,600 | 80) - Na is 1st in the field in scrambling gained, 10th in strokes gained: putting, and 23rd in proximity. Naturally, he has to scramble so much with an inconsistent tee-to-green game (ranked 55th), but Na loses most of his strokes off the tee and is fine on approach and around the greens. He finished T9 here in 2014, having gained 1.848 strokes with the putter, according to PGATour.com.
Ian Poulter ($7,600 | 80) - Poulter has acquitted himself well recently, with a missed cut at The Open his only blemish in the past five months. He is gaining strokes in every metric and is scoring to boot, ranking 19th in birdies or better gained. He has not performed well in the last few playoffs, but Poulter found something with his game this winter and needs a strong finish in order to secure an automatic spot on the European Ryder Cup team.
Billy Horschel ($7,300 | 66) - Horschel has flashed some solid form his past few events, as he is 1st in proximity gained, 9th in strokes gained: tee to green, 18th in scrambling gained, and 19th in strokes gained: par 4s over his last 12 rounds. The only thing he hasn’t done well is putt, as he has uncharacteristically lost strokes on the green in three straight events. Long term, he is a strong putter and ranks 14th in strokes gained: putting over his last 50 rounds. As a low-owned regression play, Horschel makes a ton of sense.
Joel Dahmen ($6,800 | 175) - Dahmen’s game has been white hot as he ranks 11th in strokes gained: tee to green and 17th in proximity gained, and has five straight top 25s. While he has putted poorly (89th), he is still able to score and ranks 15th in strokes gained: par 4s, 21st in scrambling gained, and 23rd in birdies or better gained.
Beau Hossler ($6,600 | 150) - Hossler may well be the best raw putter in this field. He was lights out and finished T2 at the Travelers Championship, another northeast course with bentgrass/poa annua blends on the greens (Hat tip to Josh Culp of Future Of Fantasy for the greens info). The putting has contributed to solid ranks of 30th in scrambling gained and 37th in birdies or better gained.
Mike Rodden is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Rodden also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mike_rodden. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.