DraftKings Daily Fantasy Golf Helper: PGA 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 PGA Championship at Kiawah Island.
|Key Stats for the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island|
|Total Strokes Gained|
|Strokes Gained: Off The Tee|
|Strokes Gained: Approach|
|Birdies or Better Gained|
|Performance in Windy Conditions|
Let's get to the picks. For details on why these stats stand out this week, check out the course primer.
Stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds.
Justin Thomas (DraftKings Price: $11,300 | FanDuel Sportsbook Win Odds: +1500) - Despite the history at Kiawah Island and his 2012 win, we'll skip over Rory McIlroy ($11,500 | +1100) and start with Thomas, just a few months out from his win at TPC Sawgrass and having finished T21, T13, and T26 in his three starts since while knocking it all over the greens in just about every start. Arguably the premier iron player of this generation, in his last four measured starts Thomas has gained 9.5, 6.5, 6.9, and 4.3 strokes with approaches. He is first in birdies or better gained and third in both total strokes gained and performance in windy conditions.
Dustin Johnson ($10,900 | +1700) - Johnson withdrew from the AT&T Byron Nelson last week citing lingering knee discomfort, and the uncertainty point many DFS players to defer to Thomas, McIlroy, or Jon Rahm ($10,500 | +1400). Rahm is shorter than both Thomas and Johnson and will be one of the most popular plays in the field on DraftKings. We'll pivot to Johnson then, who is 1st in total strokes gained, 4th in birdies or better gained, 5th in strokes gained: approach, 13th in strokes gained: off the tee, and 20th in performance in the wind. The No. 1 player in the world hasn't been his best of late, but nor was he last spring before turning a corner at the Pete Dye-designed TPC River Highlands and proceeding to rattle off 4 wins in 10 starts.
Collin Morikawa ($9,800 | +2800) - The defending PGA Champ has one major advantage over all of the other golfers in this top tier -- elite accuracy off the tee. Distance wins the day the majority of the time, and at 7,876 yards Kiawah Island is plenty long. But these fairways are surrounded not just by rough but sand dunes and brush, and finding the short grass will make Morikawa's life much easier. He will be comfortable from further back as one of the best long approach players in the world, and he in fact beats out Thomas for first in strokes gained: approach. Morikawa is 9th in performance in the wind, 13th in birdies or better gained, and 22nd in total strokes gained.
Viktor Hovland ($9,300 | +2200) - Vegas has shown over the past few weeks that it is not messing around with Hovland. He's routinely posted among the very best golfers in the world, and here is shorter than major champion and World No. 6 Morikawa. It's a tremendous amount of respect for Vik, and well-placed -- he's simply destined for major championship glory and this could well be his week. He is 2nd in birdies or better gained, 5th in total strokes gained, 5th off the tee, and 20th on approach. After back-to-back third place finishes at the Valspar Championship and Wells Fargo Championship, Hovland is primed for his big breakthrough this week. At 23 years old, Hovland is the same age McIlroy was when he dominated Kiawah in 2012.
Webb Simpson ($9,200 | +3700) - Like Johnson, Simpson had to withdraw from his last scheduled start and will come in at a far lower roster percentage than other golfers in this range. We have to assume he's healthy enough to play if he stays in the field, and his performance in the wind and in the Carolina's makes him an ideal target this week. He ranks 8th in performance in the wind, and he has a win at the RBC Heritage to go with a slew of top fives between that event, the Wyndham Championship, and the Wells Fargo Championship. Before tweaking his neck, Simpson has four finishes of T12 or better in his last six events, and he ranks 16th in total strokes gained.
Daniel Berger ($8,700 | +3000) - Berger keeps humming right along with a third place finish at the AT&T Byron Nelson, and he ranks 7th in performance in the wind, 10th in total strokes gained, 11th in birdies or better gained, 18th in strokes gained: approach, and 19th in strokes gained: off the tee. He's been one of the best players in the world for the past 18 months and comes in at a crowded price point that should keep the roster percentage in check. He's gained at least 9.0 strokes tee-to-green in three of his last five measured starts, and the putter has been a source of strength for this entire run. The pieces are all there and Berger is primed for a strong showing this week.
Tony Finau ($8,600 | +4000) - Finau checks in as a value, as is tradition, at major championships, where his elite skills are overridden by the fact that just about everyone priced above him has more win equity given his inability to seal the deal over the years. Missed cuts in three of his last four events are concerning, but the one in that span he made the weekend was a T10 at Augusta, and before that stretch, he had finishes of 14th, 2nd, 2nd, and 4th. He ranks 7th in total strokes gained, 9th in birdies or better gained, 10th in strokes gained: approach, 18th in performance in the wind, and 24th in strokes gained: off the tee.
Abraham Ancer ($7,900 | +4500) - Ancer checks in at one of his lowest price points of the season, a terrific value coming off consecutive top-five finishes and nothing worse than 26th over his last seven stroke-play starts. He is a high floor option who ranks 12th in total strokes gained, 21st off the tee, and 27th on approach. He is still looking for his first PGA Tour victory and his first top 10 at a major, but now inside the top 20 in the world, Ancer is on the right trajectory.
Joaquin Niemann ($7,800 | +7500) - Niemann has put together the most consistent stretch of his career, with zero missed cuts dating back to last year's FedEx Cup Playoffs. He has 5 top 10s in that span, and in just 3 of those 17 events did he finish outside the top 30. He's 9th in strokes gained: off the tee, 15th in total strokes gained, 17th in birdies or better gained, and 26th in strokes gained: approach. He's really figured out the putting stroke and is a gainer on average over his last 20 events. These paspalum surfaces are a new wrinkle, but that's the case for just about everyone in the field.
Corey Conners ($7,600 | +6000) - The straightforward plays this week are there for the taking -- start with one of the top four, plugin Hovland, and then pepper the $7k range. Conners is sure to be popular, with just 1 missed cut and 7 top 10s in his last 17 starts, and a great statistical profile. He ranks 4th in total strokes gained, 7th in strokes gained: approach, 8th in strokes gained: off the tee, and 14th in both performance in the wind and birdies or better gained. Conners is a lock for cash games and worth matching the field in max-entry tournaments. Of course, there is always merit to fading a golfer this popular, and while the ballstriking raises the floor he is certainly prone to lapses on and around the greens.
Keegan Bradley ($7,300 | +8000) - The 2011 PGA Champion arrives in terrific form, with top 30 finishes in seven of his last 80 events. He's gained on approach in every event since the August edition of this event at TPC Harding Park, and the typically lousy putter has beaten the field in five of the past six events. He lost strokes in 22 of the 25 events prior to this stretch, so the time may be running out on Keegan but we know he will be one of the best tee-to-green golfers in the field. He is one of three golfers -- along with Morikawa and Acner -- in the top 10 in both fairways gained and greens in regulation gained.
Charley Hoffman ($7,300 | +22000) - Hoffman is hot right now, with top 20s in 7 of his 10 events in the calendar year 2021, and most recently finishes of 2nd at the Valero Texas Open, 18th at the RBC Heritage, and 18th at the Valspar Championship. He ranks 9th in total strokes gained, 9th in strokes gained: approach, 10th in birdies or better gained, 19th in strokes gained: off the tee and 26th in performance in the wind.
Danny Willett ($6,700 | +28000) - The stats are way off here given how infrequently he's played in the United States recently. His PGA finishes show him arriving off a missed cut, but he finished T11 at the British Masters while pulling host duty. An opportunity to just play could be just what Willett needs to get back into contention at a major championship.
Talor Gooch ($6,500 | +34000) - Gooch is a solid option in the $6k range, with a top 5 at THE PLAYERS a few months ago and two more in the fall. That type of upside is few and far between in the $6k range, and Gooch ranks 35th in both performance in the wind and strokes gained: approach. He missed the cut at the fall PGA in his first time qualifying, and no doubt there will be more nerves this week. If he keeps his cool we can expect another good showing from Gooch.
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.