Daily Fantasy Golf: Tournament Targets and Avoids for the Travelers Championship
Golf can be one of the most exciting DFS sports to follow, as tournaments span four days and allow ample time to prepare each week, but the volatility -- top-tier golfers can miss the cut, and longshots can win outright -- makes it a unique daily fantasy sport.
Ownership won't always matter, and favorites will win and thrive some weeks, but when the chalk struggles and the pivots hit big, you can put yourself in a great position to succeed when playing large tournaments on FanDuel.
Whether you're brand new to the PGA or daily fantasy sports in general, we have you covered -- and we have daily fantasy golf projections and lineup building tools, too.
Let's take a look at some golfers to target this week in GPP tournaments on FanDuel.
|Key Stats for the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands|
|Strokes Gained: Off the Tee|
|Strokes Gained: Approach|
|Birdies or Better Gained|
|Strokes Gained: Par 4s (400-450 yards)|
|Strokes Gained: Tee to Green|
The PGA Tour heads to TPC River Highlands for the Travelers Championship, and despite this tournament following the third major of the season, the field is loaded with talent.
Bubba Watson has won this tournament three times, but bombers do not always find their way to the top of the leaderboard as ball-strikers thrive at TPC River Highlands with most golfers hitting less than driver off the tee. Accuracy off the tee tends to be more important than distance as the fairways are lined with trees, and heavy rough makes it important to keep the ball in the fairways, which are quite wide, while the greens, which see a higher percentage of golfers hitting them than the tour average, are Bentgrass with poa annua.
Stats cited below come from FantasyNational and include the past 50 rounds on the PGA Tour unless noted. Ranks are among the field.
High-Priced Tier ($12,600 - $10,000)
Target: Paul Casey (FanDuel Salary $11,300) - Likely coming in as one of the top-owned golfers of the week (projected early in the week as the leader), Casey has recorded three straight top-30 finishes, including a fourth at Wells Fargo, and he has finished inside the top-20 in four straight showings at the Travelers, including three top-five finishes. Over the last 50 rounds, Casey is inside the top-15 in all the key stats except par 4: 400-450 yards (ranks 63rd), but that rank drops to 48th in the field over the last 24 rounds. Casey has gained strokes tee-to-green in four straight tournaments, not counting the Masters, and he has gained strokes putting in three of the last four tournaments. Despite the likely high ownership, Casey’s form and stats line up for DFS players to take an overnight stance.
Target: Jason Day ($11,100) - Along with Casey (and Patrick Cantlay), Day projects to be one of the top-owned golfers in this tier as he has finished inside the top-25 in every tournament that he has made the cut in since last year's U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills (three missed cuts over that span). Despite his consistency, Day’s statistics do not pop over the last 50 rounds as he is inside the top-30 in only birdies or better and par 4: 400-450 yards, but when looking at the last 24 rounds, Day is inside the top-20 in all key stats except strokes gained: approach (63rd). As long as Day can make the cut, he has shown the ability to record high finishes, including two top-20 showings at the Travelers (2016 and 2018), along with a missed cut in 2017.
Avoid: Tony Finau ($10,600) - Despite a second-place finish at the Charles Schwab, Finau has finished 60th or worse in four of the last five tournaments, including two straight missed cuts, but even so, he might see a decent amount of ownership -- projected around 10% -- as one of the top players in the field. Over the last 50 rounds, Finau is inside the top-45 in all key stats, including sitting inside the top-20 in strokes gained: ball-striking and strokes gained: off the tee. But, as his recent form suggests, he has struggled over his last 24 rounds as he is outside of the top-20 in all key stats, including ranking worse than 90th in the field in birdies or better and par 4: 400-450 yards. Finau is a top-20 golfer in the world and always capable of a winning performance, but with a decent ownership projection and poor recent form, a full fade -- or at least an underweight stance -- seems like the best route.
Mid-Priced Tier ($9,900 - $9,000)
Target: Sung Kang ($9,100) - While most of the ownership in this range will be spread out between six to eight golfers, likely ranging from 13% to 19% owned, with Charley Hoffman and Emiliano Grillo projected as the top two in this tier (as their numbers pop), Kang could come in at sub-10% ownership. Before missing the cut in his last outing at the Memorial, Kang finished seventh at the PGA and clinched his first PGA Tour victory at the Byron Nelson. Over the last 50 rounds, Kang is within the top-60 in all key stats and ranks 13th in birdies or better. He also ranks 30th or better in all but one key stat (par 4: 400-450 yards) over his last 24 rounds.
Avoid: Adam Hadwin ($9,500) - Hadwin, who did not qualify for the U.S. Open, recorded his first top-25 finish since February’s AT&T Pro-Am at the RBC Canadian Open (finishing sixth) while missing two cuts over that span. Over the last 50 rounds, Hadwin cracks the top-20 in just two key stats (birdies or better and strokes gained: off the tee) while he sits outside the top-40 in the four other key stats. Over the last 24 rounds, Hadwin is 30th or worse in all six of the key stats, and he is outside of the top 70 in strokes gained: approach and par 4: 400-450 yards.
Avoid: Daniel Berger ($9,800) - After finishing fifth here in 2016 and second in 2017, Berger finished 67th in last year’s Travelers, and he has cracked the top-30 just once this season since his second-place finish at the Puerto Rico Open in February, including two missed cuts over that span. Projected at just shy of 10% ownership, Berger ranks inside the top-30 in just one key stat (strokes gained: off the tee), and he is outside of the top-50 in strokes gained: approach, par 4: 400-450 yards and birdies or better. Zooming in on the last 24 rounds, Berger cracks the top-35 in just one key stat (ranks 34th in strokes gained: ball-striking), and he is outside of the top-70 in birdies or better and par 4: 400-450 yards.
Low-Priced Tier ($8,900 and below)
Target: Max Homa ($8,000) - Projected as one of the top-owned golfers in this tier (just shy of eight percent), Homa has made the cut in six straight tournaments while finishing inside the top-30 twice, including a win at Wells Fargo. Over the last 50 rounds, Homa’s stats are not a sight to see as he is outside of the top-60 in all key numbers, but when narrowing in on the last 24 rounds, Homa’s outlook greatly improves as he is inside the top-30 in all key stats, including coming in at 15th in strokes gained: ball-striking.
Avoid: Brendan Steele ($7,800) - Steele, like Homa, is projected as one of the top-owned golfers in this tier, and he has finished 20th or better just twice since last year’s WGC-Mexico in March, including 14 missed cuts over that stretch. Over the last 50 rounds, Steele is inside the top-80 in just one key stat (12th in strokes gained: off the tee) and is outside the top-100 in four of the six key numbers. While Steele does crack the top-80 in three key stats over the last 24 rounds, he cracks the top-50 in only strokes gained: off the tee (ranks 9th), and he is still outside the top-100 in two key stats.
Ben Fisher is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Ben Fisher also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Gvsubrickwall. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.