PGA DFS Picks - Expert Survey: John Deere Classic

Want to know who Notorious is definitely paying up for in PGA DFS this week? Wondering which value play STLCardinals84 is eyeing most? You’re in luck. Our daily fantasy sports experts will answer a handful of questions to help you make crucial lineup building decisions for this week’s tournament.

John Deere Classic

Who is your favorite golfer for optimal lineups?

Notorious: Adam Hadwin
STLCardinals84: Adam Hadwin
redkacheek: Webb Simpson
feartheturtle: Adam Hadwin

Who is your favorite golfer for large field contests?

Notorious: Nick Hardy
STLCardinals84: Nick Hardy
redkacheek: Chris Gotterup
feartheturtle: Adam Svensson

Who is your favorite salary saver on the board?

Notorious: Vaughn Taylor
STLCardinals84: Chris Gotterup
redkacheek: Chez Reavie
feartheturtle: Martin Laird

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

Notorious: Mark Hubbard
STLCardinals84: Zach Johnson
redkacheek: Martin Laird
feartheturtle: Doug Ghim

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

Notorious: Sahith Theegala
STLCardinals84: Jason Day
redkacheek: Charles Howell III
feartheturtle: Sahith Theegala

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

Notorious: Jason Day
STLCardinals84: Adam Long
redkacheek: Jason Day
feartheturtle: Jason Day

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

Notorious: Fairways + Putting
STLCardinals84: Aggressive players / scorers
redkacheek: Accurate + wGIR
feartheturtle: Fairway Finders

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

Notorious: SG: Approach
STLCardinals84: Birdie or Better %
redkacheek: wProx inside 18 ft.
feartheturtle: Driving Accuracy

Predict the top three finishers of the event.

Notorious: 1. Poston 2. Hadwin 3. Taylor
STLCardinals84: 1. Hardy 2. Hadwin 3. Gotterup
redkacheek: 1. Reavie 2. Glover 3. Huh
feartheturtle: 1. Hadwin 2. Long 3. Svensson

Predict the winning score of the week (ie: E, -5, -10).

Notorious: -23
STLCardinals84: -22
redkacheek: -21
feartheturtle: -21

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

Notorious: Compared to tour average, the fairways (75%) and the greens (74%) at TPC Deere Run are incredibly easy to hit. When this happens, the event typically turns into a putting contest. This aligns with the fact that Steve Stricker, Zach Johnson, and Jordan Spieth have had the most success here over the years. There isn’t one specific type of golfer that I am looking to target, but the recipe for success here is fairways, wedges, and putting.

STLCardinals84: The winning score for this tournament has reached at least 16 strokes under par in TWENTY THREE straight editions. It’s remarkable that we haven’t had just one year with heavy wind or otherwise more difficult scoring conditions. It’s just birdies, birdies, and more birdies at TPC Deere Run.

redkacheek: TPC Deere Run is a less-than-driver course, which is why we have seen some horrendous drivers of the ball win or finish near the top of the leaderboard over the years. The average Driving Distance for all Par 4s and Par 5s is only 275 yards which will give some benefit to those players who have struggled OTT, but now can tone it down. I will be looking for good wGIR% players as is the case every week, but will also query players who hit a considerable amount more fairways when hitting 3W vs Driver.

feartheturtle: The winning score has reached -20 at the John Deere nine times in the last 12 years. Also, there are zero Top 50 golfers in this field. When you combine these two observations, you can see this is likely a tournament where utter chaos can occur from a daily fantasy perspective. This week, more than any, be aware of how you play and pair high owned golfers. Being unique has even more value in my eyes as there is not much opportunity cost for giving yourself a cleaner path to the top of the leaderboard.

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

Notorious: Lanto Griffin – I have never been great at predicting ownership, but I don’t expect Griffin to garner a ton of ownership this week. He hasn’t finished in the top 50 in any of his last five starts and he missed the cut last week as a fairly high owned value play. If you ignore the recent form and zoom out a bit, he’s very good off the tee, he’s top 10 in this field on approach, and he’s a top 20 putter in this field. He makes a ton of birdies and rarely makes bogeys. Believe it or not, he rates out as the third best play on the board in my model. I’m going back to the well in DFS and am betting him to win, to finish in the top 10, and to finish in the top 40.

STLCardinals84: Charles Howell – I am writing this before we have a refined set of ownership projections, but I think Howell will be contrarian this week given that he is very expensive, and his play isn’t quite as consistent these days. However, these weak field birdie fests are often tournaments where Howell thrives. He has finished 19th, 6th, and 23rd in his last three trips to TPC Deere Run, and he ranks 2nd in this field in tee to green play over the last 50 measured rounds.

redkacheek: Adam Schenk – It was quite tough looking for a contrarian play in this field as most are either similarly owned as everyone near them, or they are so low owned in the $6k range you’re really not being ““contrarian”“. Schenk stands out to me this week as he comes in with mediocre form, but back to a favorable event where he has finished Top 10 in his last 2 starts. He will still be in the low teens for ownership, but he is a nice pivot from some other values that may start to pick up steam.

feartheturtle: Adam Svensson – May be a bit off the radar this week but Svensson is a borderline top 100 golfer who is good at finding fairways and a better than average approach game which plays well in this field. He is on a streak of 5 made cuts which include two straight Top 25s in his last two outings. He played this event once, with a T18 in 2019 – and he did not even gain with the putter that week.

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

Notorious: JT Poston – While Hadwin is my favorite play for optimal lineups, Poston is my pick to win. I like to look for trends with golfers and Poston is certainly trending in the right direction. His approach play, his ball striking, and his birdie rate have all gotten progressively better over the last six months. If you zoom in even more, he’s been one of the best ball strikers in the field over the last three months. His course history here isn’t very good, but that was the case last week at Travelers and he finished in a tie for second. He’s a good putter, he finds fairways, and the rest of his game is trending upward.

STLCardinals84: Adam Hadwin – Boy, this field is horrendous. Somehow, Hadwin has become the betting favorite. He leads this field in total strokes gained and ranks 3rd in tee to green play over the last 50 rounds. His short game numbers are also very strong, and that has value in a tournament that often turns into a putting contest.

redkacheek: John Huh – I was on Huh pretty heavy last week, and after a really disappointing Third Round he managed to hang on for a T13 finish. He now comes to the John Deere Classic where he finished 7th in 2018 and a made cut (50th) in 2021. Huh has been playing extremely well and is one of my favorites to win this week. In his last 3 events he is gaining 0.04 shots per approach. He is averaging 8% more opportunities inside of 18 ft. than the field. Huh will be one of my highest exposures on the week.

feartheturtle: Adam Hadwin – Looks like I am on team Canada this week as I have Hadwin edging out Webb Simpson for the top overall golfer on the slate. Beyond fitting the mold of what I am looking for this week (driving accuracy emphasis with the ability to get hot with the putter), Hadwin features a really solid all-around game with his only negative being driving distance (only slightly below tour average) – something that he is not penalized for this week. Hadwin’s all-around game will serve him well in a field with this strength. This will come down to putting ultimately, but I would be really surprised if we don’t see the Canadian bag at least a T20 with plenty of upside on top of that.

What is your hot take of the week?

Notorious: Vaughn Taylor posts a top five finish at sub-5% ownership.

STLCardinals84: After just a handful of PGA Tour starts, Chris Gotterup pops for a top five finish.

redkacheek: No one over $8k cracks the top 10.

feartheturtle: Sahith Theegala misses the cut this week at the John Deere Classic after his rough runner-up finish last week at the Travelers.

Image Credit: Imagn

Want to know who Notorious is definitely paying up for in PGA DFS this week? Wondering which value play STLCardinals84 is eyeing most? You’re in luck. Our daily fantasy sports experts will answer a handful of questions to help you make crucial lineup building decisions for this week’s tournament.

Who is your favorite golfer for optimal lineups?

Notorious: Patrick Cantlay
STLCardinals84: Patrick Cantlay

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