Golf Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy PGA Picks and Betting Guide for DraftKings & FanDuel – The Honda Classic
Chris will be bringing you 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.
The Honda Classic
After a pit stop in Mexico for the second World Golf Championship fo the season, the PGA Tour will begin the four-event Florida swing in Palm Beach Gardens with The Honda Classic. With the event being moved and sandwiched between the WGC Mexico and Arnold Palmer Invitational the field is not quite as strong overall this time around but is still strong at the top with three of the World's Top 10 players(Justin Thomas #3, Brooks Koepka #4, Rickie Fowler #9) teeing it up this week.
The PGA National Champions course is consistently ranked among the Tour's toughest non-major tests and it shows with a winning score that has come in the single digits in five of the last six years. A lot of that higher scoring can be attributed to the wind factor but the good news for this year is that early forecasts are showing wind speeds under 10 mph throughout the event so we could see some lower scoring. That is if the players can avoid the water that is pretty much everywhere at PGA National(in play on 14 of 18 holes). I will be looking heavily at Strokes Gained: Ball Striking this week and with the likelihood we some "less than driver" strategies off the tee I will also be weighted more towards the approach side with long irons being very important with five of the 12 Par 4's over 450 yards. The balance on Bogey Avoidance and Birdie or Better % will be finalized as we see the weather forecast closer to lineup lock but as of now, I am leaning BoB% with the low wind projected.
Let's now jump in and look at some course info, trends, and then get into the picks.
Par 70 - 7,140 Yards
Greens - Bermuda
**Click the image above to see a hole by hole breakdown from PGATour.com**
Previous Five Winners
- 2018 - Justin Thomas(-8)
- 2017 - Rickie Fowler(-12)
- 2016 - Adam Scott(-9)
- 2015 - Padraig Harrington(-6)
- 2014 - Russell henley(-8)
Top Stats in the Model
- Strokes Gained: Ball Striking(70% APP, 30% OTT)
- Par 4 Scoring with Emphasis on 450+ Yards
- Birdie or Better %
- Strokes Gained: Putting on Bermuda
Top Tier Targets
While the consistency round to round hasn't been there lately(73+ in three of is last eight rounds) the results have been as he has Top 10 finishes in three straight and four of his last five events and no finish worse than T16 in that time. From a fantasy scoring standpoint, he has been elite as well with 92 or more fantasy points(both sites) in five straight events and leads this field with an average of 105.6 DraftKings/112.4 FanDuel points per event in that time. That is terrific form coming back to an event he won last year and also place T3 at two years ago. I don't think we need to pay all the way up in cash games but with his consistent fantasy scoring and huge upside, JT makes a core play in GPP for me this week.
Webb is currently #1 in my overall model and while the price is up quite a bit from last week, it is still far off his season-high on both sites. He impressed here last year his first appearance at PGA National with a T5 and comes into this year's event with even better form. He struggled a bit last week in Mexico shooting even par and finishing T39 but has finished Top 20 in each of his other four events this season with two Top 10 finishes(RSM Classic, Tournament of Champions). Looking at my custom model on Fantasy National Golf Club, he sits 2nd overall ranking 16th in SG: Ball Striking, 1st in SG: Approach, and 1st in Par 4 Scoring(2nd from 450-500 yards) over the last 24 rounds. He is also 6th in SG: Putting on Bermuda grass over his last 50 rounds on the grass type. All things considered, he is a core play for me in all formats.
Mid Tier Targets
Like Webb, Pan has seen his salary go up this week on DraftKings but not near his season-high so this doesn't feel like we are overpaying, at least for cash games. Speaking of cash games, that is where I will be targeting Pan this week. Sure he has struggled a bit lately with no Top 40 finishes in his last five events but has made the cut in eight of nine events on the season with three Top 25 finishes and now returns to the Honda Classic where he finished T37 in 2017 and T17 last year. The ball striking numbers are down recently which hinders the upside but if you are looking for a golfer in the mid-range of pricing who can make the cut on your cash game lineup, Pan is a great choice.
World Golf Ranking (#106)
Vegas Odds (55/1)
While it seems the entire DFS World will be on Michael Thompson, I will be pivoting to Scott Piercy who has been mentioned half as much according to FanShareSports tag count and is seven spots higher on my rankings. Since missing the cut at the season-opening Safeway Open, Piercy has been on fire making nine straight cuts with four Top 10's and six Top 25 finishes. He has been incredibly consistent and the numbers show it not just with the finishes as he ranks 15th in SG: Ball Striking, 19th in SG: Approach, 30th in Par 4 Scoring, and 22nd in fantasy scoring over the last 24 rounds. His subpar putting holds back his upside some but he is slightly better on Bermuda adn when even close to field average, he pops off those top 10 and 20 finishes with ease. I will have shares in all formats.
World Golf Ranking (#218)
Vegas Odds (90/1)
With so many players overpriced on DraftKings compared to their Vegas odds, it made the value range tougher this week but one name that stands out is Trey Mullinax. He is 29th in odds to win but only 48th in DraftKings pricing and enters this week with some excellent form having made six straight cuts including three straight Top 25 finishes at the Farmers Insurance Open, Waste Management Phoenix Open, and Pebble Beach Pro-Am. Over his last 24 rounds, he ranks(in this field) 5th in SG: Ball Striking, 26th in SG: Approach, 37th in Par 4 Scoring, 30th in Birdie or Better gained, and 16th in fantasy scoring. I am ignoring the missed cut here two years ago as he has developed as a player and enters with much better form this time around. He continues to out produce from a PTS/$ standpoint and is a target in all formats this week.
World Golf Ranking (#155)
Vegas Odds (125/1)
Another player who has seen his price trend down lately is Nick Watney who is down $600 since his last event at Pebble Beach. I never really feel comfortable rostering Watney but to be fair he has made seven of nine cuts this season which makes sense as he ranks 18th in scoring average before the cut. The upside is definitely lacking as he has just two Top 25 finishes but he does rank 25th on my sheet in Birdie or Better % and in my custom model on FNGC, he ranks 11th. And if you are a course history truther he has finished T41 or better in four straight trips to PGA National. I won't have much if any of Watney in GPP formats but will use him as a cheap fill in for cash games to get multiple top golfers in my lineup.
Chris Durell has been playing Daily Fantasy Sports for six 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.