PGA DFS Picks - Expert Survey: Farmers Insurance Open

Farmers Insurance Open

Who is your favorite golfer for optimal lineups?

Notorious: Jason Day
STLCardinals84: Tony Finau
redkacheek: Tony Finau
hondizzle: Jon Rahm

Who is your favorite golfer for large field contests?

Notorious: Sahith Theegala
STLCardinals84: Will Zalatoris
redkacheek: Justin Thomas
hondizzle: Xander Schauffele

Who is your favorite salary saver on the board?

Notorious: Ryan Palmer
STLCardinals84: Robby Shelton
redkacheek: Will Gordon
hondizzle: Ryan Palmer

Which value-priced golfer has the best chance of making the cut?

Notorious: Keegan Bradley (FD) / Matthew NeSmith (DK)
STLCardinals84: Keegan Bradley (FD) / Ben Griffin (DK)
redkacheek: Scott Stallings
hondizzle: Cameron Davis

Which golfer are you afraid of being underweight on compared to the field?

Notorious: Sungjae Im
STLCardinals84: Jason Day
redkacheek: Justin Rose
hondizzle: Jason Day

Which high-priced golfer will you have little to no exposure to in tournaments?

Notorious: Collin Morikawa
STLCardinals84: Collin Morikawa
redkacheek: Hideki Matsuyama
hondizzle: Collin Morikawa

What type of golfers are you targeting most? (ie: bomber, short game specialist)

Notorious: All-around, but distance off the tee doesn’t hurt
STLCardinals84: Ball Striking
redkacheek: 60/40 OTT/APP
hondizzle: Ball strikers / Good Course History

Which statistic other than Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green are you weighing most?

Notorious: SG: Approach
STLCardinals84: Bogey Avoidance
redkacheek: wGIR+
hondizzle: SG: Approach

Predict the top three finishers of the event.

Notorious: 1. Day 2. Schauffele 3. Rose
STLCardinals84: 1. Zalatoris 2. Finau 3. Rahm
redkacheek: 1. Finau 2. Day 3. Zalatoris
hondizzle: 1. Rahm 2. Schauffele 3. Zalatoris

Predict the winning score of the week (e.g., E, -5, -10).

Notorious: -16
STLCardinals84: -15
redkacheek: -14
hondizzle: -16

Which useful trend or statistic stuck out most during your research?

Notorious: We have another multi-course event on tap this week and the courses couldn’t be any more different. The South Course will host three of the four rounds and is one of the most difficult on the PGA Tour. It’s a Par 72 that measures nearly 7,800 yards. The fairways are tough to hit, the greens are tough to hit, scrambling is difficult, and there are a lot of three-putts. The North Course is routinely one of the easiest courses on the PGA Tour. It’s much shorter and features bentgrass greens rather than poa annua greens. The weather angle is interesting this week, as we are expecting a ton of wind on Thursday. Does this favor those that are playing the easy course or the difficult course on the windy day?

STLCardinals84: Torrey Pines South Course is the longest course in the annual PGA Tour rotation at over 7,800 yards, and it also plays as one of the most difficult courses. Each player gets one round on the North Course prior to the cut, and that is a shorter course that plays much easier than the South. In showdown builds for day 1 and day 2, be sure to take 100% North Course players. For the full week contests, I will put more emphasis on bogey avoidance this week in what should be a really tough test.

redkacheek: Quite opposite to last week’s birdie fest, this event has seen moderate scoring, generally in the low teens, even high single digit under par in 2015, 2016. The South Course is really the one to focus on, and with it tipping out nearly 7,800, I will be focusing on OTT, specifically Distance in a way to accentuate the course. Be careful using too much Approach this week without a good weight to OTT or you will be stuck with good long iron players but with no OTT upside.

hondizzle: After a few weeks of less than complete information, we get a tournament that has a bit more certainty. Course history can be a strong angle to use for the week, as we see quite a strong trend in golfers who play well year in and year out at Torrey Pines. From a showdown perspective The North Course typically plays a few shots easier. Ball strikers stand out to me in terms of a course fit. Well-placed iron shots with a solid course game plan typically leads to a good week at The Farmers.

Who is your top contrarian golfer (when considering price, key stats, projected ownership, etc.) on the board and why?

Notorious: Ryan Palmer – I will certainly change my answer if Palmer picks up steam throughout the week. He projects as an awful value play in my model, but I don’t always have to trust the machine 100% of the time. Palmer gained over four strokes ball striking at the Sony Open and now returns to play one of his favorite events on tour. Torrey Pines is a classical track that really suits the game of many golfers. It’s why we see so many with such consistent course history at this event. Palmer has racked up five straight top 25 finishes here with two runner-ups during that stretch.

STLCardinals84: Robby Shelton – He has made the cut in his two previous trips to Torrey Pines, and those were in years where the form wasn’t as strong as it is now. Over the past 24 rounds, he ranks inside the top 20 in this field both on approach and around the green, which is great for bogey avoidance on this course. Throw in a T6 last week, and all the signs are positive for a sub-10% owned value play.

redkacheek: Justin Thomas – Of all the high-priced players this week, JT is getting the least buzz. There’s certainly a lot less appeal, but his upside is just as high as anyone. His course history is mostly a moot point, but he has played here three times, with his last year’s finish a top 20.

hondizzle: Will Zalatoris – I think the combination of solid options in terms of high end spends and some resistance to play a golfer returning from injury should keep ownership down on Zalatoris. From a pure skill evaluation there are not many weeks a healthy Will Zalatoris would not stand out as a top option. If ownership stays manageable Zalatoris has a great chance to stand out on a course he plays very well.

Who is your top overall golfer (when considering price, key stats, projected ownership, etc.) on the board and why?

Notorious: Jason Day – The stars seem to be aligning for Day this week. He changed his swing last summer in order to take some of the strain off his back. He’s talked about major improvements in his health and how they have allowed him to practice more. The results have certainly followed, as he’s rattled off top 25 finishes in five of his last six starts. During that stretch, he has gained 22 with his ball striking. Now he gets to play in one of his favorite events. He has two wins and four other top 10 finishes here over the last 10 years. He finished third here last year when he had no incoming form, so we should like his chances this week.

STLCardinals84: Will Zalatoris – The results haven’t been elite of late, but that’s going to keep ownership down a little bit. I’ll gladly take that. Zalatoris always performs a lot better on difficult courses, and he nearly pulled off a victory in last year’s edition — losing in a playoff to Luke List. That’s after finishing 7th here the year prior. He leads this field in ball striking over the past 24 rounds, and as long as he can putt it reasonably well, he should be in the mix. I like the floor and the ceiling here.

redkacheek: Jon Rahm – To be honest, Rahm would be extremely popular this week even if he didn’t win both of his last two starts. Ironically, people will overthink it, and I want to be overweight on Rahm here. Obviously, the course history and recent form is best by a significant margin, but players will look to build in the 9k range to avoid the “Rahm letdown.” I don’t think it happens.

hondizzle: Jon Rahm – At this point what is there really left to say about Rahm. Top talent playing at a high level on a course he loves. Clear favorite to win for the cloned week in a row.

What is your hot take of the week?

Notorious: Jason Day picks up his first win since 2018.

STLCardinals84: Jason Day misses the cut by four strokes.

redkacheek: Davis Thompson bounces back with a playoff win against Rahm.

hondizzle: Rahm wins by four shots.

Image Credit: Imagn

Farmers Insurance Open

Who is your favorite golfer for optimal lineups?

Notorious: Jason Day
STLCardinals84: Tony Finau
redkacheek: Tony Finau
hondizzle: Jon Rahm

Who is your favorite golfer for large field contests?

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About the Author

  • John Britt (jmbwngfn)

  • One of the top baseball and hockey analysts in the DFS industry, John Britt is a family man hailing from St. Louis, Missouri. A proud graduate of the University of Missouri, John’s passion is hockey but he excels at multiple DFS sports. He has been nominated multiple times for awards for his written work in both baseball (best MLB series) and hockey (3x NHL Writer of the Year nominee) and is now the Lead Editor at RotoGrinders. John can be found on Twitter at the username JMBWngFn.

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