PGA Sim Sports Picks for The Northern Trust on FanDuel

Golf is nearing its return, but there are still simulated events happening on FanDuel. Who stands out this week?

The PGA Tour's season is on hold, but FanDuel is doing its part to keep golf going -- in spirit.

They have simulated out three big-time events so far: THE PLAYERS, the Masters, the PGA Championship, and the Open Championship. This week, they're onto The Northern Trust.

So far, the simulated results saw Jon Rahm take home THE PLAYERS and Seve Ballesteros (not a typo) win the 2020 simulated Masters.

Rahm again won the simulated RBC Heritage by a full five strokes over Rory McIlroy, Scottie Scheffler, and Marc Leishman. Rory got payback at the Wells Fargo, edging out Dustin Johnson and Rahm.

At the PGA Championship, Brooks Koepka won in a playoff over Nick Faldo, Jim Furyk, and Tyrrell Hatton. Last week, Jhonattan Vegas fended off Hideki Matsuyama, Rahm, Webb Simpson, and Bryson DeChambeau to win the simulated Valspar.

Paul Casey got his revenge after losing the Valspar to win the Open.

FanDuel is running back the simulations for this week's Northern Trust. You can join the free-to-play contest here.

There are some caveats, so we'll dig into everything about it now.

The Basics

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.

So, we're going to have to use some guesswork here.

Overall Strategy

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'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.

Handling the Active Golfers

With pricing pretty static week to week and no actual changes to the stats to input, I figure I can make a running list of the best values per tier.

Best Values
Salary Best Values
Salary Best Values
Rory McIlroy $11,900 Xander Schauffele $9,500 Erik van Rooyen $7,200
Patrick Cantlay $11,400 Tommy Fleetwood $10,000 Paul Casey $8,600
Adam Scott $11,200 Hideki Matsuyama $9,900 Collin Morikawa $8,900
Justin Thomas $11,500 Gary Woodland $9,300 Ian Poulter $8,100
Jon Rahm $12,000 Justin Rose $9,600 Matt Wallace $8,300
Webb Simpson $11,300 Rickie Fowler $9,800 Jason Day $8,500
Bryson DeChambeau $10,300 Brandt Snedeker $9,000 Sungjae Im $8,800
Dustin Johnson $11,600 Abraham Ancer $9,700 Billy Horschel $8,700

Of the 64 golfers who were in all seven simulations so far, seven have made every cut: Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka, Tony Finau, Jason Day, Kevin Kisner, Jim Furyk, Webb Simpson.

Another nine golfers missed just one of seven cuts: Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Matt Kuchar, Adam Scott, Joaquin Niemann, Hideki Matsuyama, Tyrrell Hatton, Daniel Berger, and Francesco Molinari.

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.