PGA Betting Guide for The Open Championship
We're down to the final major of the 2019 calendar year as the world's best golfers head to Royal Portrush for the first time since 1951 for The Open Championship.
It's odd not having a major after The Open, but that's our reality. That's real life. The majors being crammed together has been, well, it's something new!
Let's dig into the field and see what stands out and which golfers might fit your eye to back this week. (All stats come from FantasyNational.com and cover the past 100 rounds on the PGA Tour, unless otherwise noted.)
Approach to the Card
The odds on FanDuel Sportsbook are pretty evenly distributed. Rory McIlroy (+950) is the favorite in his home country, and Brooks Koepka (+1000) is close behind. Then it's a drop to Jon Rahm (+1600), who has been on fire overseas the past month, and Dustin Johnson (+1900).
To maximize value and win equity, the route I'm taking is seeking that mid range more often than not.
As usual, I'll list more names than I would add to my own card because you may not be interested in my favorite pick(s), but someone else who just misses out for me might catch your eye. More options should help you narrow it down to guys who pique your interest, and you should always feel confident in your own picks.
Picks to Consider
Dustin Johnson (FanDuel Sportsbook Win Odds: +1900) - If you have no issues with Rory at +950 or Koepka at +1000, feel free. Rory shot a 61 at Royal Portrush when he was just 16 and has been the best golfer in 2019 when adjusting for field strength, according to my own data. Brooks not only has won or finished runner up in four straight majors, but he also has a caddie who knows just about everything there is to know about this course. DJ, though, offers up substantial value relative to those two, and that matters if we're trying to build a bankroll. Johnson leads the field in strokes gained: off the tee and is sixth in strokes gained: approach over the past 100 rounds. His wind splits are great, and he has four top-10s at the past eight majors.
Patrick Cantlay (+2800) - Cantlay ranks 8th in strokes gained: off the tee and 11th in strokes gained: approach over the past 100 rounds and has been lingering in majors of late. He has made seven of his past eight cuts at majors with two top-10 finishes. His splits in the wind have been promising, and his recent win at the Memorial is part of a 2019 run of form that ranks him second in the field in adjusted stroke average.
Adam Scott (+2800) - Scott (2.12) ranks fourth in adjusted stroke average behind only McIlroy (2.64), Cantlay (2.36), and Dustin Johnson (2.34). He has three top-10 finishes in the past eight majors and grades out ninth in strokes gained: approach over the past 100 rounds. He also has two top-10 finishes at the past five Open Championships to give him top-10 form at the linksy majors. The big concern is that he hasn't played since the U.S. Open.
Justin Thomas (+3000) - Thomas has the volatility to contend in a major. At his best, he's good enough to fend off the field. He gained 9.5, 2.0, and 11.2 strokes tee to green over his past three events. He doesn't have great form at the Open, missing two of three cuts over the past five years. In those, he lost 1.1 and 0.1 strokes against the field, so it's not like he was dreadful. There's still a buy-low window on Thomas after his wrist injury. His ball-striking has been great, and he just finished ninth at the Scottish Open.
Paul Casey (+4500) - Casey's odds have dropped from +3400, opening up some value for us. He's gained 8.1, 8.8, 6.5, and 8.2 strokes tee to green over his past four measured events, but that includes just two events in May and two in June, so there's layoff risk here. Casey, though, ranks 11th in adjusted strokes gained in 2019 and 7th in strokes gained: approach over his past 100 rounds on Tour.
Marc Leishman (+6500) - Leishman's odds have fallen from +5500 at the end of last week. Leishman's major performance has been rough over the past year and a half (35th at Pebble Beach was his best result over the past six majors), but he has great form at the past five Opens: 5th, 2nd, 53rd, 60th. He scrambles well (11th) and has top-12 proximity from the rough. Leishman also has good splits in the wind and has been trending up over the past few weeks.
Patrick Reed (+9500) - Reed's getting hot right now, finishing 32nd, 30th, 5th, and 23rd the past four starts. Sure, those aren't top-10s, but Reed has the type of game that can translate to an Open Championship. Reed was 20th, 12th, cut, and 28th at the past four iterations. Reed sits third in strokes gained: around the green and 23rd in scrambling, and his irons are hot right now, as he has gained at least 6.0 strokes in his past two events.