Featuring in-depth analysis of The 2021 PGA Championship! 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 PGA Championship! 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 2021 PGA Championship!
This week the players will tee it up for the second major of the year at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island, which checks in as the longest course ever played for any major in the tour’s history, checking in at 7876 yards and a Par 72. Given that, in terms of metrics, I think it’s going to be all about ball striking, and hoping that the players you choose get hot with the putter this week and knock down some putts. With a star studded field and rather soft pricing, something to consider is leaving some significant salary on the table in MME formats to differentiate and try to get a unique line-up, and given the quality players available in the $7k-8k range, I think that this is a pretty viable strategy. Let’s have a look at five players across various price points to consider adding into your player pool for this week’s major at Kiawah Island!
The Best of the best…
- Rory McIlroy, $11,500
He’s the favourite for the week, but I am expecting that he won’t be as popular as some of the other elite golfers priced cheaper than him as he really hadn’t played up to his usual standards before last week’s event. Rory comes into this one fresh off a win at the AT&T Byron Nelson – a week where he played great golf, and he’s priced up accordingly as the most expensive golfer in the field. There’s no shortage of quality players teeing it up this weekend in the $7k-$8k range, and that factor plays just as much into this recommendation as anything else as I really like the group that you can easily put together even with Rory’s price tag. He’s had previous success at Kiawah Island, and while it is playing longer than it did when Rory won here, there’s no question that players are hitting it longer than the 200 yards that they have added to the course. This recommendation is more about the game theory, but he also played outstanding last week, and I wouldn’t be shocked if he carried that over.
The Next Group
- Louis Oosthuizen, $8,000
His game isn’t an ideal fit here – but he’s still above average at ball striking, and his putting has been off the charts so far this season, something that I have no problem banking on until we see otherwise. He leads the tour in SG: Putting, and much like with Rory – I do think he’ll check in lower owned than I think he should be this week due to the fact that I’m expecting many DFS players this week to be focused solely on ball striking. He had a respectable showing at The Masters, finishing 26th – and while a repeat of that isn’t likely to help you in a large field MME GPP this week, he comes into this one really feeling it on the green, and has 3 top 10 finishes in his last 5 events. He won’t have rock bottom ownership levels, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him around 10% – and I wouldn’t be shocked if we see another strong showing at a major from a guy that elevated his game at big events in the past.
- Joaquin Niemann, $7,800
I expect him to be a popular choice this week – but I think this course really is a dream fit for him. He’s long off the tee (8th on tour), accurate (10th on tour in SG: OTT) and an all around fantastic young golfer (9th on tour in SG: Total). I think that it’s only a matter of time before he contends at a major, and while we haven’t seen that with regularity from him yet – I will probably like the idea of having significant exposure to him in MME tournaments until he breaks through and sees his price rise into the $9k range. The course is a perfect fit for his game in my opinion, and he’s probably my favourite dollar for dollar option on the slate. To me, the only drawback here is that he’ll be chalk – but I think it’s good chalk.
- Billy Horschel, $7,200
I don’t think this course is a dream fit for him – but he is strong off the tee and around the green, and we have seen glimpses of him being able to throw darts with his approach. He’s always been a bit of a streak golfer and we’ve seen instances of him being able to compete in high quality field events in the past. He comes into this one on a nice trajectory, including a 4th place finish in his last tournament – and if you are looking for a pivot off of some of the more popular options in the price range (Corey Conners – another guy I really like this week for instance) – Horschel is a great guy to consider for $400 cheaper.
Don’t Forget About…
- Jason Kokrak, $7,100
He’s great off the tee (19th on tour in SG: OTT), above average with his approach game, and has been an elite putter so far this season, ranking 6th on tour. When you put all facets of his game together, he ranks 21st on tour and has been playing great golf pretty much all season, including of late. He has made every cut so far in 2021 – and while he doesn’t have a long list of success at majors, he has managed to string together a number of top 10 finishes over that stretch, giving him a 23rd ranking in the FedEx Cup standings. The price point is very reasonable, and I like how his game fits the course. I think he’s a great option to mix into builds this week on the low-end.