Golf Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy PGA Picks for DraftKings & FanDuel - Quicken Loans National
Chris Durell will be bringing weekly PGA picks, analysis, and breakdowns to help you cash on DraftKings and FanDuel. As every week in DFS PGA changes with the course setup, field of players and weather, Chris will be providing a range of different picks for cash games as well as upside plays for tournaments. If you have any questions to lineup lock you can reach him a variety of ways. Leave your question/comment below in the comments section, find him in the DFSR Chat room or hit him up on Twitter(@Jager_Bombs9). Chris is also providing his DFS PGA Weekly cheatsheet where he provides stats, course history, current form, fantasy points, and much more. Grab your copy today and edge out the competition.
Quicken Loans National
Welcome back fantasy golf fans! After an even-par, opening round 70, Bubba Watson climbed the leaderboard in a hurry shooting 63, 67, and 63 once again on Sunday to grab his third win at the Travelers Championship last weekend. He did so with an elite ball striking performance finishing 4th in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, 18th in Strokes Gained: Approach and then also finished 22nd in Strokes Gained: Putting.
This week the PGA Tour travels to TPC Potomac for the 2018 Quicken Loans National. You may not be as familiar with the course as it was brought back into the Tour rotation for last years event meaning we have limited to data to go off for course history. Kyle Stanley took home the hardware last year after a playoff with Charles Howell III as both golfers finished with a seven under. One thing we learned from last year was that TPC Potomac plays very difficult as displayed by the winning score and was ranked inside the Top 10 in hardest courses on tour in 2017. The fairways are narrow and the rough can be very penal which puts a ton of emphasis on Strokes Gained: Off the Tee /Accuracy(Fairways Gained if using Fantasy National). You will also see a heavy dose of "Less than Driver" gameplans off the tee. Below is a quote from last year(via Future of Fantasy Golfanac):
With the course being a Par 70, there are 12 Par 4's with six of them coming in at 450-500 yards in length. There will also be heavy emphasis on Par 4 Scoring in my model while I will be looking closely at that yardage range as well on Fantasy National. As always Strokes Gained: Approach will be there with a focus on long iron play as you will see below in the approach shot distribution snapshot.
With limited course history this week, I will be looking at some picks based on current form and stats only. Let's dig in.
TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm
Par 71 - 7,107 Yards
**Click the pic above to check out a hole by hole breakdown from PGATour.com**
Approach Shot Distribution
Top Stats in the Model
- Strokes Gained: Approach/Proximity from 175-200 & 200+ Yards(35%)
- Par 4 Scoring(25%)
- Strokes Gained: Off the Tee/Driving Accuracy(15%)
- Bogey Avoidance(15%)
- Birdie or Better(10%)
One little note before jumping into the article. I use multiple sources for my research to help determine key stats starting with Fantasy National Golf Club and their elite set of tools from course history, hole composition, past performance and much, much more. I also combine it with some of the information on Future of Fantasy including correlated courses and most importantly the quotes from players section to help determine what it takes to win here(key stats). When breaking down ownership and trying to come up with popularity, I love the tools over at FanShareSports as they break down every piece of information on articles and social media mentions to provide us with Tag Counts, Sentiment Ratings, Subject Tags, Salary Differential week to week and much more.
Top Current Form Targets
Walker leads all golfers on my sheet when looking at both average finish(17.6) and average DraftKings scoring(87.8) over his last five events. He is coming off a somewhat disappointing T56 at the U.S. Open but overall has made nine straight cuts in stroke-play events including three Top 10's and five Top 25 finishes. He missed the cut here at TPC Potomac in last year's event but like I mentioned above, it's a small sample size and what stands out is his stats when looking at courses that play difficult and are less than 7200 yards(see below via Fantasy National Golf Club). He makes a great play in all formats.
"Chucky Three Sticks" has always been considered one of the most consistent cut makers on Tour and has the stats to prove it. He ranks #2 in the form ranks on my sheet and comes in having made 10 straight cuts and over the last two years has made 35 of his last 40 cuts(87.5%) in stroke-play events with 20 Top 25 finishes. He also comes back to TPC Potomac and the Quicken Loans National off a runner-up finish in 2017 and crushes it when looking at a range of different stats including difficult courses less than 7200 yards. All things considered, he is a lock in my cash games this week and I will also have a heavy dose in GPP formats.
This is, by no means, a safe cash game play but Peter Malnati, after a terrible stretch of golf(missed cuts in 9 of 11 from November to April), has been playing consistent considering the punt price this week. He doesn't have a Top 25 finish but has made six straight cuts including a T26 at last week's Travelers Championship and performed well here last year with a T38 finish. If you are going heavy on Fowler or Tiger this week, Malnati is a nice, cheap addition to your lineups to tie it all together in a stars and scrubs scenario.
Who the Stats Like
World Golf Ranking (#11,700)
Vegas Odds (6.5/1)
For the first stats recommendation, I wanted to go off my sheet and leading all golfers in my model this week is Rickie Fowler. He is 15th in Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, 25th in Driving Accuracy, Top 15 in both Proximity from 175-200 and 200+ yards, 1st in Par 4 Scoring, 2nd in Bogey Avoidance, 4th in Birdie or Better %, and 3rd in Scrambling. Looking at the Last 50 Rounds data(via Fantasy National) using my custom model, he also ranks second overall with ranks of 1st in Strokes Gained: Par 4 and Bogey Avoidance and is Top 30 in all stats I used. He also performed very well here at TPC Potomac last year where he finished with a T3 and is my top pick in the elite tier of pricing this week.
World Golf Ranking (#120)
Vegas Odds (45/1)
Next up is Kevin Streelman who is fourth in my stats model on my sheet with ranks of 10th SG: OTT, 7th in SG: APP, 5th in Driving Accuracy, 2nd in Par 4 Scoring, and 1st in Bogey Avoidance. Running the same stats model on Fantasy National, Streelman ranks #1 overall when looking at the last 50 rounds and 13th over the last 24 rounds. He has also been very consistent all season as he has made 17 cuts in 20 events with four Top 10's and seven Top 25 finishes. All things considered, I will have him in my lineups in all formats this week with his mid-tier price on both sites.
World Golf Ranking (#93)
Vegas Odds (45/1)
Another player I will have exposure to in all formats this week is Jamie Lovemark. He ranks 47th in the field in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee on my sheet but 23rd in Driving Accuracy. He does struggle a bit with the long irons ranking 66th and 64th in Proximity from 175-200 and 200+ yards but absolutely crushes the Par 4's as he ranks 9th overall in that area and also 9th in Bogey Avoidance. On top of that, he is also 6th in Strokes Gained: Around the Green and 18th in Scrambling and when everyone will be missing greens this week that will be very key.
Tournament Update Thread
Chris Durell has been playing Daily Fantasy Sports for five years and fantasy in general for more than a decade. He is an active player in college football, NFL, MLB, NASCAR, NHL and of course PGA. He lives in Saskatchewan, Canada with his wife and two daughters. You can follow him on Twitter at @Jager_Bombs9 for advice, strategy, answers to any PGA questions and how he copes with the winters up north.
- Rickie Fowler: (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)