Featuring in-depth analysis of The 2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational. Daily fantasy golf analysis for this week’s DFS slate to help you build winning cash game and tournament lineups on DraftKings.
Welcome to The Primer column for The 2021 Arnold Palmer Invitational! We are here to help you build your DFS lineups for FanDuel, DraftKings or whatever other sites you choose to play on (this article does have a DraftKings bias though).
In case you missed it – you can find my cheat sheet posted for The Arnold Palmer Invitational here!
This week the players head to Bay Hill for the always popular Arnold Palmer Invitational – held at a course where Tiger historically dominated. There are some others here that have strong course history (Rory for example), and it’s a course that favours elite golfers, players that have the ability to make shots and strike the ball well in all phases of the game. Checking in over 7400 yards, the Par 72 course with Bermuda greens will be a tough test for all – and I wouldn’t go too deep into the $6k range this week as I find it more unlikely than usual that a player in that range will challenge on such a loaded field event on a course where the cream of the crop usually rises to the top….
But, that’s enough of burying the lead – let’s have a look at some options to consider including in your player pool this week!
Last Week’s Picks
- Tony Finau – 14th
- Viktor Hovland – T2
- Joaquin Niemann – T28
- Ryan Palmer – T54
- Abraham Ancer – T18
The Best of the Best
- Tyrrell Hatton, $10,000
I like the spot this week for both Rory and Hovland, but dollar for dollar, I think that Hovland gives a lot of appeal as he gets ready to try and defend his title here. I think that saving the bit of salary to get a golfer who can excel on any track is pretty appealing to me given the fact that I don’t want to go too far down the salary list this week. He wasn’t striking the ball near his elite 2020 form early in the year, but he’s been rounding into form. His chipping has still been below average, but he does rank 21st on tour in SG: Total this season, excelling everywhere other than that aspect, and I think he makes a strong run at defending his title this weekend.
Others to Consider…
- Sam Burns, $8,400
He’ll be chalky – but honestly, I don’t really care. He’s been elite this season, ranking 18th in SG: OTT, 28th in SG: APP, 16th in SG: Putting, ranking him 10th in SG: Total. The metrics remind me of a poor man’s Tyrrell Hatton from last year around the same point in time, and I think things are lining up for him to make a run – both this weekend and beyond as long as he keeps playing as well as he has been!
- Francesco Molinari, $8,700
I’m taking the plunge here. I haven’t rostered him since 2019, but I think he’s in a good spot this week. First, I like what I’ve seen from him of late, with three top 10 finishes in his last five events….so that’s a start. He also has a great track record at Bay Hill, including winning the event a couple of years back to go along with a pair of other top 10 finishes. His stats don’t pop if the sample size is large enough – so I’m not expecting his ownership levels to be too high this week. This one, is all about a former elite golfer, who may be breaking back onto that tier again – who comes into this one with strong recent form and a history of success at the course…we’ll see how it plays out!
- Lanto Griffin, $7,700
The price point is steep compared to historical levels for him, but there’s a lot to like about his recent form. He comes into this one with two top 25 finishes in his past three events (his other event was a narrow miss at 26th), and I like his ball striking/putting combo, which should play well at Bay Hill. I’m not expecting him to be too popular with the masses, so he could be a nice twist off of some of the more chalk options that will be in his price range like Kokrak and Cam Davis.
Do Not Forget About…
- Corey Conners, $7,300
Conners is an average putter, but everything else about his game has plenty of intrigue. In fact, he ranks 19th on tour in SG: TTG (28th in SG: Total – so it’s not like his putting tanks him, like some). I think he has the potential to putt well enough to hang around this weekend and his elite ball striking, if he’s on, is enough to have him contend here at Bay Hill. He has a poor track record here at the event – but that will help keep him from being too chalky in all likelihood. He has six top 25 finishes in the last eight events, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see him add another one to that mix at Bay Hill.