PGA Betting Guide for the Farmers Insurance Open
Picking winners of a golf tournament is hard. Doing it consistently is downright impossible. But finding value is something all bettors must practice in order to give themselves the best chance to make hay when the day finally comes that they ping a champion.
Below, we will cover the best bets for the Farmers Insurance Open based on current form, course fit, and -- of course -- the value of their odds over at FanDuel Sportsbook.
Torrey Pines welcomes some of the world's top players this week for the Farmers Insurance Open. Tiger Woods joins the fray for the first time in 2020 at a venue he knows as well as any on Tour. He has seven wins at this event, along with the 2008 U.S. Open at the South Course, and he built the model for success here. Even though Tiger was miles ahead of Phil Mickelson in the early-mid 2000s, Lefty was the second-best player in the world and picked up two wins of his own here in that span. By and large, class prevails at Torrey.
And so we find a strong field this week but can't shake the feeling that one of the big names at the top comes away with the trophy. We'll pick our favorites from the bunch and try to find value behind them. If it's not one of the big names, it will have to be someone who has the potential to become one. We'll look for ascendant stars who have the potential to compete for major championships and FedEx Cups for years to come, or established golfers who have already shown they can. Anything less won't cut it this week.
For more info on the North and South Courses at Torrey Pines Golf Course, along with this week's key stats and comparable courses, check out the course primer.
At the Top
Jon Rahm (+750) - We'll split hairs at the top by taking the overall ceiling of Rory McIlroy (+600) and dominant course history of Woods (+1000) and betting that Rahm is in the nascent stages of both. He's climbed to No. 3 in the Official World Golf Ranking despite going on a now-two year winless stretch in official PGA competition. He's won four times on the European Tour, and last year's small field Hero World Challenge in that span, so it's not like he's incapable, but compared to his nearest neighbors at the top of the OWGR, his trophy case is noticeably bare. World No. 1 Brooks Koepka, No. 2 McIlroy, and No. 4 Justin Thomas each have five PGA wins in that span, while No. 5 Dustin Johnson and No. 6 Woods have three each. The hardware will come, and Rahm is already in the conversation of the very best golfers in the world. A second victory at Torrey Pines could lead to a monster year for the 25-year-old Spaniard.
Gary Woodland (+2200) - Further down, we find the reigning U.S. Open Champion -- a Midwesterner who has played his best golf on the West Coast over the past few years. The major championship hangover appears to be behind him -- after failing to crack the top 30 in any full-field event after his win at Pebble Beach, he's been inside the top 10 in his last three official PGA starts, with a T7 at the Hero World Challenge and a T20 at the Dunlap Phoenix on the Japan Golf Tour sprinkled in between. He has finished inside the top 20 at this event five times in the past six years, and as he showed last year, he will be unflappable down the stretch no matter who else is in contention.
Tony Finau (+2700) - We know distance won't be a problem for Finau, and he has been a stud in strong fields for the past two years. Even though he "can't win", Finau is a stud in strong fields and has taken quite a shine to Torrey Pines, finishing inside the top 25 in each of his five trips. Finau has finished top 10 at The Masters in each of his two trips, and Augusta pops as a prime comparison, given its history of elite winners and the absolute necessity to drive the ball well. A double water ball on his back nine at the American Express kept him out of the top 10 and likely even the top 5 last week, but even if he can't get over the hump for a win, he stands a great chance to place in that range again this week. If you can't stomach the outright, consider him for a Top 5 Finish (+650) or a Top 10 Finish (+320).
Patrick Reed (+3000) - Reed has been playing fantastic for the past seven months, with his missed cut at the Sony Open being his only PGA finish outside the top 30 since the U.S. Open in June. He closed the season so strong that he would not be denied a spot on the Presidents Cup team, and controversy at the Hero World Challenge could serve to give Reed the edge he needs to compete with the world's best. He obviously matches the Augusta correlation as the proud owner of a green jacket, though the only fear would be a mental lapse if he gets beat down by the boo-birds in the gallery. His last two finishes at this event are T23 in 2018 and T13 last year.
Matthew Wolff (+6000) - As we dip beyond 50/1, we don't find many golfers who have a future range of outcomes that include a top 10 player in the world. Wolff is the man in this range, and he is laughably underpriced compared to fellow rookie Collin Morikawa (+3100). Wolff's specialty is his driver, and if he bombs it out and keeps the ball in play, he has as much upside as almost anyone this week.
Keegan Bradley (+7000) - Hello darkness, my old friend... Bradley usually does right by bettors by announcing before the weekend whether or not he has it. Prior to last year's T35 finish, Bradley booked back-to-back top 5s at the Farmers, and he did it without one of his occasional fire-breathing putting performances. On a Tour filled with elite ball-strikers who cannot putt to save their lives, Bradley is the rare case who actually does make those putts from time to time. He's already been bet down from closer to triple digits at some books, but a live 70/1 with a slight hedge on a Top 10 Finish (+850) make for a nice way to round out our card this week.