Daily Fantasy Golf Course Primer: John Deere Classic

The PGA Tour returns to TPC Deere Run after we didn’t get the John Deere Classic on the 2020 schedule.

The course has hosted this event since 2000, so there is plenty of data overall to dig into from a historical standpoint.

As for the field, well, it's not very good. I can't lie. The headliner is Daniel Berger, who deserves all the credit we can give him, but things drop off very quickly after his name.

But what about the course itself? What do we need to know about TPC Deere Run as we prep our FanDuel lineups and betting cards?

TPC Deere Run Course Information

Par: Par: 71
Distance: 7,268
Average Green Size: 5,500 square feet
Green Type: Bentgrass
Stimpmeter: 11.5
Past 5 Winning Scores: -21, -27, -18, -22, -20
Past 5 Cut Lines: -3, -2, -1, -2, -3

At 7,268 yards, TPC Deere Run is around 30 yards shorter than the average par 71 on the PGA Tour’s regular rotation, and the 5,500-square-feet greens are on the small end of the spectrum, as well. The small greens haven't led to difficulty, however.

The average cut line is a few shots under par over the past five years, and ultimately, the course is rather easy relative to par, as evidenced by four of the past five winning scores being -20 or better.

This scoring trend naturally increases variance. The easier the course plays, the more plausible it is for the weaker portion of the field to contend.

From a hole-by-hole standpoint, only two holes rate out as at least 110% longer than the median distance of the same par, and they’re both long par 4s (around 500 yards).

Meanwhile, we have five holes playing at least 90% or shorter of the par-based median. This includes two more at 91%, namely four par 4s shy of 400 yards.

We could see those with elite short irons fare well here given the breakdown by hole distance.

Courses Similar to TPC Deere Run

Some other courses that can be categorized as short-to-average courses by overall length with small bentgrass greens would include:

- TPC River Highlands (Travelers Championship)
- Detroit Golf Club (Rocket Mortgage Classic)
- Colonial Country Club (Charles Schwab Challenge)

We’ve seen the Travelers and the Rocket Mortgage Classic on the schedule the past two weeks leading in, implying that super short-term form could be more relevant than usual, given the similarities between those two courses and TPC Deere Run.

Also, the Charles Schwab was played at the end of May, giving us three relevant courses over the past few weeks.

Key Stats for the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run

- Strokes Gained: Approach
- Good Drive Rate
- Strokes Gained: Putting (on Bentgrass)
- Birdie or Better Rate
- Proximity From 125 Yards and Shorter

Not a lot of specific stats emerge as more important than others for TPC Deere Run, but one thing we can say for certain is that driving distance isn’t a must, according to datagolf.

Again, lessened emphasis on distance should lead to increased volatility overall because the shorter hitters can still contend.

Double that with the low scoring, and we're looking at a similar leaderboard to what we had last week at the Rocket Mortgage Classic with a few big names near the top but a lot of golfers from lower in the ranks, as well. (Only this week, we don't really have a lot of big-name golfers in the field.)

Golfers With Great Course History at TPC Deere Run

These golfers have gained at least 1.5 strokes per round at TPC Deere Run since 2012 among golfers with at least eight rounds played at the course, via FantasyNational.

- Zach Johnson (2.4)
- Russell Henley (2.1)
- Roger Sloan (2.0)
- Johnson Wagner (1.9)
- Andrew Landry (1.8)
- Ben Martin (1.8)
- Scott Piercy (1.8)
- Sam Ryder (1.8)
- Daniel Berger (1.8)
- Tyler Duncan (1.7)
- Ryan Moore (1.6)
- Scott Brown (1.6)
- Steve Stricker (1.6)
- Brian Harman (1.5)

The past winners at this course who are in the field include Dylan Frittelli (2019), Michael Kim (2018), Ryan Moore (2016), Brian Harman (2014), Zach Johnson (2012), Steve Stricker (2009, 2010, 2011), Jonathan Byrd (2007), John Senden (2006), and Sean O'Hair (2005).