This isn’t your standard “week after a major” field.  The Wyndham Championship is the final tournament before the FedEx Cup gets underway; and as such, a number of big names are here chasing points.  Adam Scott, Jason Dufner, Luke Donald, Charl Schwartzel, and Tiger Woods all need big weeks if they want to extend their respective seasons.  Maybe you want to target guys who are desperate for Cup points?

The tournament is played at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, NC.  It’s a par 70 that comes in at just over 7,100 yards.  There will be lots of wedge opportunities and equal chance for the bombers to flex their muscles.  Here’s a hole-by-hole overview of the course.

The cream tends to rise to the top at Sedgefield.  Despite a general lack of talent relative to other events, the big names that wind up here tend to do well.  Here are the past five winners:

Camilo Villegas -17 (2014)
Patrick Reed -14 (2013)
Sergio Garcia -18 (2012)
Webb Simpson -18 (2011)
Arjun Atwal -20 (2010)

The experts were in nearly unanimous agreement this week, both in terms of what stats to look for as well as which players to ultimately target.  They are primarily focusing GIR, proximity, and accuracy off the tee while sprinkling in some scoring metrics like par 4 efficiency and overall birdie or better %.  As always, they believe you should consider both strokes gained: tee-to-green and putting.  You can find the field leaders in each category below.

Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green

  1. Hideki Matsuyama 1.480
  2. Webb Simpson 1.313
  3. Vaughn Taylor 1.253
  4. Paul Casey 1.143
  5. Lucas Glover 1.062

Strokes Gained: Putting (Otherwise known as the Killer Bs)

  1. Aaron Baddeley .738
  2. Brooks Koepka .695
  3. Brandt Snedeker .618
  4. Branden Grace .611
  5. Brendon Todd .583

Driving Accuracy

  1. David Toms 73.97%
  2. Chez Reavie 71.90%
  3. Colt Knost 71.40%
  4. Justin Leonard 71.34%
  5. Brendon Todd 70.84%

GIR

  1. Jim Herman 72.79%
  2. Stewart Cink 72.77%
  3. Will Wilcox 72.45%
  4. Paul Casey 71.44%
  5. Russell Knox 70.73%

Proximity

  1. Vaughn Taylor 30.33′
  2. Jason Gore 31.83′
  3. Russell Knox 31.92′
  4. Chez Reavie 32.17′
  5. Lucas Glover 32.42′

Birdie or Better %

  1. Vaughn Taylor 25.44%
  2. Justin Thomas 24.32%
  3. Brooks Koepka 23.93%
  4. Hideki Matsuyama 22.91%
  5. Will Wilcox 22.45%

Par 4 Scoring

  1. Hideki Matsuyama 3.96
  2. Will Wilcox 3.96
  3. Brooks Koepka 3.98
  4. Russell Knox 3.98
  5. Brandt Snedeker 3.99

Keeping those stats in mind, these are the golfers the experts liked.

(I’m going to start breaking the expert consensus into three categories: Highly Touted, Recommended, and Suggested.  The categories represent a sliding scale of hype, with “Highly Touted” representing the most popular picks and “Suggested” representing the least.)

***** EXPERT CONSENSUS *****

Highly Touted

  • Bill Haas $9,600
  • Brandt Snedeker $10,300
  • Brooks Koepka $10,800
  • Vaughn Taylor $6,700
  • Will Wilcox $8,400

Recommended

  • Bryce Molder $6,800
  • Colt Knost $6,900
  • Harris English $8,600
  • Justin Thomas $9,400
  • Ollie Schniederjans $8,300
  • Paul Casey $9,200
  • Webb Simpson $9,500

Suggested

  • Austin Cook $8,000
  • Branden Grace $9,700
  • Russell Knox $8,100

There was a lot of overlap in terms of expert opinion this week; way more than usual.  So, I’m going to recommend a few similarly priced pivots off plays that will more than likely be over-owned.  These recommendations are specifically geared towards differentiating yourself in GPPs (you don’t need to worry about ownership percentages for cash games)Consider playing…

  • Adam Scott or Hideki Matsuyama over Brooks Koepka and Brandt Snedeker.  Everyone is going to be on Brooks and Sneds; with good reason.  Scott and Matsuyama might not be in the best form, but they are still world class talents.  This could be a similar situation to what we saw at the Masters.  Justin Rose was playing like crap (T-37, 55th, and three MCs in five starts leading up to Augusta); and a result, he was less than 10% owned.  All he did was finish T-2 and help some guy win a million dollars.  You might be able to get Adam Scott at less than 10% and $11k in a weak field where he needs to play well.  That’s a pretty nice value.
  • Billy Horschel over Branden Grace, Bill Haas, Webb Simpson, Justin Thomas, or Paul Casey.  You’re probably going to have multiple players from this pricing tier or above.  Using Billy Ho in one of these spots should help you differentiate a little, as he’s receiving next to no chatter.  (Except from me, Billy Ho Island for life!)
  • Austin Cook over Ollie Schniederjans.  It’s really a coin flip whether Austin or Ollie will have the better week.  Cook is $300 cheaper and will come in at a fraction of Ollie’s ownership number.  Go with Cook.
  • Martin Laird or Jerry Kelly over Vaughn Taylor.  Taylor’s 2014 stats look great, but they’re out of line with his career numbers.  I expect a crashing back to Earth style regression in the near future.  Vaughn will easily be the most over-owned player this week.  You would be wise to look elsewhere in GPPs.

That wraps up my pre-Wyndham coverage for the week.  Hopefully you can use some of this info to profit.  Get that cash.

oreo

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