DraftKings Daily Fantasy Golf Helper: The Open Championship
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 Open Championship at Royal Portrush Golf Club.
|Key Stats for the Open Championship at Royal Portrush|
|Strokes Gained: Off the Tee|
|Strokes Gained: Approach|
Let's get to the picks. For details on why these stats stand out this week, check out the course primer.
Stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds, unless otherwise noted.
Rory McIlroy (DraftKings Price $11,600 | FanDuel Sportsbook Win Odds 9/1) - McIlroy leads the way this week both in DraftKings price and Vegas odds. He is a Northern Ireland native and holds the course record at Portrush, albeit 14 years ago when McIlroy was just a teenager. Even so, good course vibes plus elite event history -- top-five finishes his last four Open Championships including a win in 2014 -- adds up to a worthy favorite. His stats are the best in the field, too, as he's first in strokes gained: off the tee and seventh in approach. Rory is also 1st in both birdies or better gained and bogeys avoided, and while he's just 55th in scrambling gained, those numbers are weighed down by the fact that he just doesn't need to scramble that often. The last five Open winners arrived in elite form, and four had a win in at least one of their five prior events. McIlory won the RBC Canadian Open two starts ago and has three other top 10s in that timeframe.
Brooks Koepka ($11,400 | 10/1) - The World No. 1 certainly fits the bill of an elite talent with a recent win under his belt, as he repeated at the PGA Championship back in May (five events ago for Koepka). Since then he's had underwhelming finishes at all but the U.S. Open, where he was runner up. He is 16th off the tee and 24th on approach, but Koepka is at his best in the majors, and stats over long samples are hard to trust with him. His caddie is a local who used to work at Royal Portrush, giving Brooks some inside info this week.
Justin Rose ($9,900 | 23) - Rose was a runner up at Carnoustie last year, though his form this year has not quite been up to snuff with his 2018 self. That's not to say he's been bad -- with two third place finishes and a T13 in his last five events, he checks the recent form box just fine. Most recent was his T3 at the U.S. Open, and the Englishman found the podium earlier this year at Torrey Pines. So the pedigree is there -- the question will be whether he can string together four straight solid rounds. He is 20th in birdies or better gained, 23rd off the tee, and 31st on approach.
Patrick Cantlay ($9,000 | 28) - From a recent form standpoint, Cantlay profiles as exactly the type of golfer we want to target this week. He has a win in his recent history after taking down the Memorial, and he's been scorching hot all season with just two finishes since the fall worse than T21 (notably, both those events were missed cuts, at the Farmers Insurance Open and THE PLAYERS). Cantlay is 8th in strokes gained: approach, 9th in strokes gained: off the tee, and 13th in scrambling gained.
Adam Scott ($8,800 | 28) - Sure to be popular in this range, the powerful Aussie is an elite ball striker who has rediscovered the balance in his game this season. Scott is 13th in approach, and while he is just 46th off the tee, he's been better relative to the field in windy conditions. He ranks 7th off the tee and 14th on approach in his last 50 rounds classified as "windy AF" by Fantasy National. Scott has terrific recent form, with five straight top-18 finishes, most recently a T7 at the U.S. Open.
Matt Kuchar ($8,700 | 33) - Kuchar has arguably been playing the best golf of his life this season, and with three top 10s in his last five events and two wins on the circuit earlier this year, it's hard to argue that the FedEx Cup points leader hasn't been one of the best players in the world for the past eight to nine months. He ranks 11th in approach and 12th in scrambling gained, and he is an elite wind player who has contended at the Open before. In fact, he is second in total strokes gained over his last 50 windy AF rounds.
Gary Woodland ($8,200 | 65) - He hasn't flashed the upside in his history at the Open, but Woodland does have five straight made cuts at the event and has never been this good. Woodland obviously broke through with his win at the U.S. Open, but he's been solid all year and was eighth at the PGA Championship, gaining 8.4 strokes on approach at Pebble Beach and 8.0 strokes at the PGA. He is 8th off the tee and 9th on approach, and those numbers stay solid in windy conditions (17th and 3rd, respectively).
Low Priced Options
Graeme McDowell ($7,900 | 65) - As has been well-documented over the past few weeks, McDowell grew up playing Portrush and made a huge push earlier this season to earn his spot. While his win in Puntacana wasn't exactly a major championship-caliber field, winning any event on the PGA Tour is an incredible accomplishment, especially after the swoon McDowell has been in for the past few years. It is fitting that he won his U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, another coastal, links-style course with penal rough and fast greens. He's missed the cut in both the Irish Open and Scottish Open tuneups, but with a with a T16 at the U.S. Open and a T8 at the RBC Canadian Open right before that, his game is still in pretty good shape.
Rafael Cabrera-Bello ($7,500 | 65) - Stat engines aren't going to love him because he's done most of his recent damage on the European Tour, but RCB has been on fire of late. With three straight top 10s, Rafa could be on one of his streaks and has shown upside at the Open in the past, with a T4 finish in 2017. Statheads eyeing up this range will gravitate toward Webb Simpson ($7,600 | 75) and Rory Sabbatini ($7,400 | 300), but Vegas likes Cabrera-Bello the best, and most PGA DFS players have not seen his name since he limped to four straight finishes outside the top 40 in May and June. His form is much better than the stats or recent results show.
Brandt Snedeker ($7,400 | 150) - Even sneakier than Cabrera-Bello, Snedeker is getting no love from Vegas despite a couple top 5 finishes in his last few events. He boasts a stellar Pebble record, and while his recent results at the Open are lackluster with just one top 25 in the past five years, he was T11 in 2013 and T3 in 2012. Sneds probably doesn't have much chance in a birdie-fest, but if Portrush is going to reward accuracy off the tee and a good short game, he is very much in play. His two best finishes came in Opens won by Phil Mickelson (at -3 in 2013) and Ernie Els (-7 in 2012), who like Snedeker can't hang with the bombers unless strategy and survival are the priority.
Chez Reavie ($7,100 | 170) - Reavie got the elusive win at the Travelers Championship the week after grinding out a T3 at Pebble Beach. With two missed cuts and a T14 at the PGA Championship rounding out his last five events, Reavie is a unique golfer in this range to have showed well at each of the last two major championships and have also earned a win this year. He is 23rd in approach but just 48th off the tee, though he is 1st on the entire PGA Tour in driving accuracy this season. He serves as a natural price pivot off Scottish Open champion Bernd Wiesberger, who will undoubtedly be popular coming off a win after pricing had already come out.
Mike Lorenzo-Vera ($7,000 | 250) - After a T16 at the PGA Championship that saw him gain 4.4 strokes on approaches, Lorenzo-Vera was runner up at the Andalucia Masters, T9 at the Irish Open, and T28 at the Scottish Open. The PGA was his only Tour event since the prior year's PGA, so he has very little in the way of model stats. But from an analog level, he is 22nd in scrambling percentage on the European Tour.
Joaquin Niemann ($6,900 | 150) - Niemann has been striking the ball extremely well over the past few weeks, and he's turned in seven consecutive made cuts with no finishes worse than T31. He banked another top 10 last week, his third in the last four weeks. Niemann is 30th in approach and 34th in both strokes gained: off the tee and scrambling gained.
Andrea Pavan ($6,400 | 390) - Pavan won the BMW International Open a few weeks back, which is important because both McIlroy and Henrik Stenson won that event in the lead up to the Open Championship in the years they lifted the Claret Jug. He was T4 at the Scottish Open after shooting 62-66 over the weekend.
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.