PGA Sim Sports Picks for the Wells Fargo Championship on FanDuel
The PGA Tour's season is on hold, but FanDuel is doing its part to keep golf going -- in spirit.
They have simulated out THE PLAYERS and even the Masters -- with a few tweaks to the field. The simulated results saw Jon Rahm take home THE PLAYERS and Seve Ballesteros (not a typo) win the 2020 simulated Masters. Last week, Rahm again won the simulated RBC Heritage by a full five strokes over Rory McIlroy, Scottie Scheffler, and Marc Leishman.
FanDuel is running back the simulations for this week's Wells Fargo Championship. You can join the free-to-play contest here.
There are some caveats, so we'll dig into everything about it now.
You can learn all the details about PGA Sims Sports over on FanDuel, but I'll run down the basics: it's the same format as your usual PGA DFS event. You roster six golfers and accrue fantasy points for how they do in the simulated event. Scoring is the same as a standard PGA Tour event.
Are there any wrinkles? Of course. The main one is that -- rather than these golfers playing out the event -- stats are the basis for the simulation. Specifically, "distance, par, and player skill." That's really all we have to go on.
There are no legendary or fictional golfers in the field this week, but we are going to have to use some guesswork here.
The field is small (101 golfers), but with the regular cut rule, we're going to see around 65% of golfers play the simulated weekend. We can get a little punt heavy as a result, but a six-for-six lineup is always key.
Without knowing exactly what data goes into projecting the winner of a golf tournament, I went back and leveraged datagolf.org's adjusted strokes gained data.
Typically when breaking down an event, current form is key, but I would have to assume a larger sample of data goes into this. I used data since 2019 to try to identify some of the best per-dollar plays on the slate among the active golfers.
Best of the Best
Rory McIlroy's ($12,000) hot stretch of golf puts him at the top fo the pricing board for a reason, and his adjusted stroke data is too good to ignore entirely. He's the best value on the board even at his price. The simulated events have been kind to McIlroy, as he has finished 2nd, 25th, and 3rd.
Patrick Cantlay ($11,200) is a statistical sud as well, so he's always going to look strong in a contest like this. He's been 3rd, 4th, and 24th in the three sims.
Adam Scott ($11,400) is just a smidge back from Cantlay and has finished cut, 6th, 12th in the three sims.
Xander Schauffele ($10,500) is the best value in the $10,000 range by a good margin. He has finished cut, 11th, and 30th.
Paul Casey ($9,100) probably has positive variance coming his way. He's 24th in the OWGR and has good stats, second-best among golfers priced between $9,000 and $10,000. Casey has been cut, cut, 35th in the simulations.
The next best statistical values in this range are Matt Kuchar ($9,800), Rickie Fowler ($9,400), and Gary Woodland ($9,900). All things considered, every golfer priced between $9,000 and $10,000 are viable.
Erik Van Rooyen ($7,200) looks like he should be more expensive than he is, given his stats. He has made all three simulated cuts (49th, 55th, 44th), which works at a low salary.
Collin Morikawa ($8,900) is another clear value here. He was cut at the simulated Masters but was 40th and then 16th at the most recent event. He's a great tee-to-green player, which is the best profile to bet on in a simulated format.
The author of this article has no involvement with the PGA Sim Sports simulations powered by numberFire and has no knowledge of the results of the upcoming contest.