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above the cut

Above the Cut: PGA DFS Advice & Daily Fantasy Golf Picks for The John Deere Classic on DraftKings & FanDuel

Ben Rasa



Ben Rasa's expert daily fantasy golf picks for DraftKings & FanDuel PGA DFS lineups for The John Deere Classic with Byeong Hun An.

The John Deere Classic brings a full but weaker field, and from a DFS golf strategy perspective, that adds an element of intrigue into roster construction. Everyone feels overpriced, and that is going to challenge gamers making daily fantasy golf picks on DraftKings and FanDuel this week. Let’s dive into the course and the field.

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The Course

The PGA Tour head to TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill., for this event. It is another atypical par 71, which means three par 5’s, two of which will be eagle opportunities for the field. The course measures about 7,250 yards, but the scoring is going to be there with the winner probably getting into the 20-under range. The course does not favor bombers, and although more distance is always a positive, plenty of guys club down to get some increased accuracy off the tee. Guys hit a lot of fairways here, leading to a lot of greens hit and plenty of birdie chances. There is no real defense, and it is open season for scoring.

Putting usually is the difference in these birdie fests, but that is the case most weeks. The problem is that the high variance of putting makes it very hard to calculate who will go nuts with the flat stick. Birdie-or-better percentage is going to be more important than usual.

It is worth noting that there are a few players already in the Open Championship who are playing this week, which is a little concerning in terms of motivation but nothing so severe as to cross them off on that factor alone. Most guys still have plenty to play for with the Fed Ex Cup coming up quickly and tour cards starting to be in jeopardy.

The Field

The week before an overseas major is a recipe for a weak field. Almost all the big names are in Scotland getting some reps in, so the rest of the players are mostly not in the Open Championship. Pricing begins with Daniel Berger north of $11,000, followed by Sungjae Im, Brian Harman and last week’s winner Cameron Davis to round out the $10,000-plus options. Finding value could be difficult in this field, but there are still plenty of options for salary relief. The lower ranges are full of players with red flags, but that does not mean they do not have upside. Most have inconsistent recent form or inexperience playing at this level, which is why they are towards the bottom of the salary. With a field that looks much different than a normal week, it opens a ton of different builds, though most of the field will be drawn to a balanced build of more familiar golfers.

The Awesemo PGA DFS Before Lock is live at 7:10 p.m. ET, breaking down the John Deere Classic and finding the best daily fantasy golf picks this week.

Daily Fantasy Golf Picks This Week | John Deere Classic

Top Priced: Daniel Berger $11,100 DraftKings, $11,900 FanDuel

Berger is overpriced like everyone else, but at the same time he is a justifiable top option this week. He is the class of the field and has been putting together another solid 2021 PGA Tour season. Berger won back in February and is coming off a seventh-place finish at the U.S. Open. The irons have been doing the heavy lifting, and that should continue here. The other benefit is Berger is a solid putter, and the ability to convert birdies is crucial at this event.

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Berger is projected to be the highest-owned player in Awesemo’s daily fantasy golf ownership projections (27.6%). That is going to force allocating a large percentage of lineups towards Berger to get overweight on the field. There are plenty of lineup constructions around Berger, and the opportunity cost is not an issue given the rest of the field is so weak. If looking to capture the tournament favorite and the safest play on the board, head right to the top with Berger.

Also considering – Aaron Wise, Alex Noren, Seamus Power

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Mid-Range: Kyle Stanley $7,900 DraftKings, $9,900 FanDuel

Stanley is one of the few guys that seems underpriced this week. His mid-range salary is a slight increase from his normal cost, but considering the field strength, he could be more expensive. Stanley is playing well, having found the weekend in six straight events, which stands out among this price range. If his ball striking continues, there will be an opportunity for a top-end finish. Stanley has gained off the tee and with the approach in five straight weeks, and if his putter turns around, there is no reason he cannot pay off this salary.

Also considering – Chez Reavie, Lucas Glover

Lower Priced: Byeong Hun An $6,900 DraftKings, FanDuel $7,900

Like last week, the $6,000 range is full of guys with questionable form or players who do not have a ton of experience on tour. Some of them will play well this week, while most will get two rounds and a ticket home. The value and savings of this range open a ton of salary, and it is helpful when getting to Berger at the very top. The other positive is almost all these guys are lightly owned.

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An is a solid ball striker and one of the best around-the-green players on the PGA Tour. All of that should be good enough for him to be higher than $6,900 in this field, but his putter lets him down. An has not gained strokes putting since January, which is astounding considering how many events and different surfaces that includes. It is hard to imagine that changing this week, but his ball striking seems to be in a decent place. He has gained tee to green in six of the last seven starts, and his putter being around zero will be enough to find the weekend. With Awesemo projecting An at just 2% ownership, he is a solid daily fantasy golf pick.

Also Considering – Scott Piercy, J.J. Spaun

Awesemo's Top Golfer Tool is an Ace

Since golf performances are largely uncorrelated between one golfer and the next, aside from weather impacts, a good way to view a PGA DFS lineup is as a parlay, where you have to hit all 6 picks to hit. The Awesemo Top Golfer Tool gives you the probabilities that each golfer will finish top 6, as well as their 25%, 50%,and 75% results as a benchmark for how you can expect each golfer to perform at the tournament.

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The PGA DFS projections for this week, the DFS PGA showdown projections for DraftKings and the PGA DFS ownership projections for FanDuel are made and used by Alex Baker, the No. 1 DFS player in the world. PGA DFS rankings for FantasyDraft will be posted at least a day in advance of any tournament. Looking for more PGA DFS picks for FanDuel and DFS PGA lineups?

*Ben Rasa (aka Jazzraz)* has been involved with sports and numbers for quite some time dabbling in the poker world , sports wagering and of course finding a home in the DFS world. While he enjoys playing NFL, NCAAF and NBA he has found his best advantage on the links with PGA and the Euro Tour. Jazzraz focuses on GPPs and uses a analytical approach to try and find pricing inefficiencies as well as trying to go against the grain to find those under owned lesser know players that can make the difference in giant field tournaments. You can contact Ben by emailing [email protected].

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