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Expert PGA Picks & Golf Betting Tips This Week for The Northern Trust | Wednesday, Aug. 18

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PGA Picks odds golf betting picks this week Northern Trust free expert las vegas odds Patrick Cantlay Rory McIlroy

For the first of three stops for the FedEx Cup Playoffs, Liberty National Golf Club (par 71, 7,410 yards) in Jersey City, N.J., hosts the Northern Trust this week. Since this event started rotating courses between Massachusetts and New York, three playoff opening tournaments have been held at Liberty National: The 2009 and 2013 Barclays and the 2019 Northern Trust, which was won by Patrick Reed at -16. Only the top 125 players in FedEx Cup points are eligible for the Northern Trust this week, and following the conclusion of this event, the top 70 will move on to the BMW Championship. Every week I use Alex Baker’s Unofficial World Golf Rankings to identify mispriced options in both the PGA DFS and golf betting market. Below are three expert PGA picks for this week and Vegas betting odds for the Northern Trust.

Expert PGA Picks & Vegas Odds: Northern Trust

Much like the standard rankings in golf, Awesemo has produced the Unofficial World Golf Rankings. We can use these in PGA DFS lineups or to find an edge on our golf betting picks. At Awesemo, the metric is the number of strokes above or below how an average field in a PGA tournament performed. How to weigh these data points is essential, as people love to talk about short form versus long form. Only PGA tournaments are considered right now, and golfers need a minimum of 20 rounds played. Players are not rewarded by more or fewer rounds in the time period.

Rory McIlroy (+2000, BetMGM)

Following an opening-round, 2-over par 72 at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude, McIlroy carded three straight 4-under 66s en route to a 12th-place finish. He had an incredible week striking the ball, ranking second in strokes gained tee to green and third in strokes gained on approach. However, McIlroy lost 3.5 strokes with his putter, which ultimately held him back from contending for the win. It is all going to come together soon for McIlroy, and a return to Liberty National is the perfect place for him to claim his second victory of the season.

McIlroy has thrived on the bentgrass greens at Liberty National, with a career average of 2.6 strokes gained putting per start, resulting in a 19th-place finish in 2013 and a sixth in 2019. Also, before the St. Jude, he finished fourth at the Tokyo Olympics, which were also held at a par 71 that presents bentgrass greens. McIlroy gained 3.6 strokes putting that week, good enough to rank him seventh for the event. Ten of McIlroy’s 19 career PGA wins have come on par 71s, and taking home the top prize this week would firmly put him in the contention for the third FedEx Cup of his career.

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Patrick Cantlay (+3000, William Hill)

Cantlay is always a sharp target on bentgrass and needs backing at this number. He just won on this green type at the Memorial two months ago, and remarkably, all four of his career wins on Tour have been at venues that sport bentgrass greens. Plus, Cantlay posted a 12th-place finish in his debut at Liberty National two years ago, and his recent form should translate to success in Jersey City this week.

All three previous winners at Liberty National ranked top four in strokes gained tee to green and top eight in greens in regulation. Over his last 24 rounds, Cantlay ranks third in strokes gained tee to green and first in greens found.

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Adam Scott (+4500, PointsBet)

Following his runner up at the Wyndham, Scott is now 82nd in FedEx Cup points, and another high finish is the only way he will move onto the BMW Championship. His elite ball striking was resurrected at Sedgefield Country Club this past week, ranking fourth in strokes gained tee to green and third in strokes gained on approach. Also, despite the timely miss in the playoff, Scott generated positive strokes with his flat stick for the sixth time in his past seven starts. Mixing Scott’s terrific ball striking with some solid work on the greens is a tremendous recipe for success, and if he can carry over the momentum to Liberty National, a win is absolutely in the realm of possibilities at this venue. After winning the 2013 Barclays at this par 71, Scott finished fifth at Liberty National for the 2019 Northern Trust.

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