DraftKings Daily Fantasy Golf Primer: WGC-Mexico Championship

Justin Thomas tops the pricing on DraftKings this week. Is he a must-play at the WGC-Mexico Championship?

Daily fantasy golf requires a new approach for each and every event.

The course and field change week after week, making no two contests alike. That means you need to refine your approach for each PGA Tour event to try to find golfers who are primed to excel for your daily fantasy golf lineups.

Each week, we have a course primer, and our daily fantasy golf projections and lineup builder can help you get started, but these golfers stand out specifically on DraftKings for the WGC-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec.

Key Stats

Key Stats for the WGC-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec
Strokes Gained: Approach
Opportunities Gained
Strokes Gained: Par 4s
Strokes Gained: Par 5s
Scrambling Gained

For details on why these stats stand out this week, check out the primer.

Let's get to the picks.

All stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds, unless otherwise noted.

High-Priced Studs

Justin Thomas (DraftKings Price $11,800 | FanDuel Sportsbook Win Odds 10/1) - Thomas is first in strokes gained: approach, and it's not particularly close. Over his last 50 rounds on Tour, Thomas has gained 60.7 strokes with his irons. The next closest golfer, Hideki Matsuyama, has gained 54.3 strokes on approach, and no one else on the entire PGA Tour is above 50. He is also third in both opportunities gained and strokes gained: par 5s, and he is ninth in strokes gained: par 4s. Thomas has two top 5s since the event moved to Club de Golf Chapultepec, and after back-to-back disappointing Sundays JT is ready to claim a trophy.

Rory McIlroy ($11,100 | 12) - Dustin Johnson and McIlroy are second and third in odds, respectively, and while you can make a case for each almost every single week, McIlroy gets the edge for being a few hundred dollars cheaper. With such a strong field every dollar will count, and McIlroy is 1st in strokes gained: par 4s and bogeys avoided, 10th in opportunities gained, 12th in scrambling gained, 13th on par 5s, and 19th in strokes gained: approach. Since 2014, Rory has gained the more strokes than anyone at WGC events, according to Future of Fantasy.

Tiger Woods ($9,500 | 21) - In what is no longer a novelty entry, Woods is very much in play this week. He quite plainly used the early part of his 2018 schedule to feel out courses and try to get four rounds in. He needed to test himself to make sure he could handle a full tournament grind and also pick up two more days of work in competitive golf. This year, he is strategically picking his schedule and it is no mistake he chose Mexico over the Honda Classic. He can leave driver in his bag for most of the day and focus on navigating the course and making tough shots -- basically preparing for what he'll need to do at majors. Woods is a great fit here, as he is the only golfer inside the top nine in every key stat: second in scrambling gained, third in strokes gained: approach, sixth on par 4s, seventh in opportunities gained, and ninth on par 5s.

Mid-Priced Option

Xander Schauffele ($9,100 | 29) - Schauffele arrives in Mexico on the back of a remarkable span of consistency, as he's finished 9 of his last 10 tournaments inside the top 25. That would just be mediocre here, but with wins in each of his last two small field, no-cut events (the Tournament of Champions and WGC-HSBC), X-man looks the part this week at a significant discount from the favorites. Schauffele is not quite the iron expert as some of the others in this range (just 33rd in strokes gained: approach and 44th in opportunities gained), but the results speak for themselves. He is 4th in strokes gained: par 5s and 10th in scrambling gained.

Hideki Matsuyama ($9,000 | 31) - Another strong West Coast finish for Matsuyama give him three finishes of T15 or better in his last three events. He is second in both strokes gained: approach and opportunities gained - but with Hideki the question is rarely whether he will find himself in scoring position, but rather whether he will sink the putts. He uncharacteristically had to scramble a ton at Riviera but still managed a top-10 finish. His irons have been so good for so long that one off week makes him ripe for some positive regression on approach, and if not the ability to limit the damage makes him very attractive this week.

Webb Simpson ($8,300 | 41) - Simpson has played just twice in 2019, finishing 8th at the Tournament of Champions and 20th at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. His stats go back further than most because of that limited winter schedule, but they are excellent. Webb is 1st in scrambling gained, 2nd in strokes gained: par 4s, 8th in approach, and 15th in opportunities gained. With many builds leaning toward stars and scrubs, along with the fact that others in this range have been in more events recently, have better course history, or both, Simpson could fly under the radar this week.

Tommy Fleetwood ($8,200 | 37) - Speaking of guys who have played recently and have good course form, enter Fleetwood. He was the cash game chalk at $8,600 last week and can expect to garner high ownership again this week at an inexplicably lower price. He has a good record here, finishing T14 last year and solo 2nd in 2017. He is fourth on par 5s and eighth on par 4s, and don't let the 29th in approach throw you off. He was 15th on the entire European Tour in strokes gained: approach in 2018.

Low-Priced Options

Gary Woodland ($7,900 | 37) - Another under-priced golfer, Woodland has been among the world's best since the fall. Only a superhuman effort by Schauffele kept him from picking up a win at the TOC, and he arrives coming off back-to-back top 10s at the Farmers and WMPO. Woodland is tied for first in strokes gained: par 5s, he is sixth in strokes gained: approach, and eighth in opportunities gained. His scrambling numbers leave something to be desired (49th), but he has hit so many greens over his last 50 rounds he just hasn't had to scramble much. The short game will bite him at some point, but he is on fire recently and is in consideration for all formats at this price.

Rafael Cabrera-Bello ($7,800 | 50) - Cabrera Bello came stateside after a few strong finishes in Asia and the Middle East and promptly ran into cold temperatures and rain storms at Pebble Beach and Riviera. He gutted out two top 25 finishes but should be thrilled with the calmer conditions at Club de Golf Chulpatepec this week. He is 14th in strokes gained: par 4s and 16th on approach, and although his other stats are only average he does not have any glaring weakness in his game. He is 32nd on par 5s, 33rd in opportunities gained, and 39th in scrambling. He finished T3 here last year.

Matt Kuchar ($7,700 | 55) - In his triumphant return to Mexico, after resolving his controversial tipping situation (sort of), Kuchar once again catches the eye. He is 4th in scrambling gained, 5th in strokes gained: par 4s, 18th in opportunities gained, and 21st in approach. After grinding through two weeks of long days and rain delays, he should be eager to get back to business in optimal conditions. Kuchar's price the rest of the season likely hinges on this week. If he crushes again, he'll be in the mid-to-high $8K range for the Florida swing, the PLAYERS, and maybe even the Masters. So play him this week at value, and if he bombs you'll have many chances over the next few months for him to win it back for you.

Tyrrell Hatton ($7,300 | 55) - Hatton gets a bump given his course form (top 10 each of the past two years), and his stats line up just fine. He is 8th in scrambling gained and 13th in strokes gained: par 4s. That's no fluke, as he was sixth on the European Tour in scoring on par 4s last year. Euros are worth targeting here given the elevation and strategic elements, and Hatton has proven he has an eye for the course.

Bargain Basement

Eddie Pepperell ($6,900 | 190) - Pepperell makes his WGC debut this week (it is also his first non-major event outside of the European Tour). He does not have a large enough sample to judge his performance in our key stats, but comparable statistics on the European Tour show an arrow clearly pointing up. In 2018 on the Euro circuit, he was 4th in strokes gained: approach, 11th in par 4 scoring, 14th in scrambling percentage, and 23rd in birdies per round. He rode a hangover to a sixth place finish at last year's Open Championship.

Emiliano Grillo ($6,900 | 90) - Grillo is 10th in strokes gained: par 5s, 21st in opportunities gained, and 23rd in approach. He has been solid tee to green in 2019 but is in the midst of one of the worst putting stretches in his career. If he starts to roll some putts in, Grillo could find himself in contention at a very low price.

Mike Rodden is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Rodden also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mike_rodden. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.