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First Cut: Genesis Open



Free DraftKings and FanDuel PGA picks for this week's PGA Tour Championship from Ben Rasa & Tim Frank, including Tiger Woods & more!

First Cut-

Whether this is your first time reading, or you’re a Tour Vet, the First Cut should have something for you. In this “First Cut,”  we’ll cover a wide variety of topics in a short amount of time! Ultimately this article should serve as a guide for the week and what’s to come.


Here’s what you can expect to see in the article:

  • Tournament Intro
  • Course Preview= By the Numbers, Course Guide
  • DFS-Preview- Sweat-sheet/Contest Preview
  • Statistical & Player Preview

Tournament Intro: The Genesis Open


Finally, we are done with the multi-course, no shot tracker, tournaments, for the rest of the year…Well, maybe not on the shot tracker portion as any out of country tournament likely won’t have it. The majors have their own apps so no worries there.

Anyways, we’ve got the best field of the year, AND the best GPP’s of the year from DraftKings, and hopefully from FanDuel as well. The Genesis Open in partnership with the Tiger Woods Foundation (yes the big cat is playing) has hosted at Riveria Country Club for quite a while. The Genesis Open the current tournament name for one of the oldest events PGA Tour.  

It has always resided in southern California and was first played 92 years ago in 1926. Many may know by previous names; Los Angeles Open, Northern Trust Open, and the Nissan Open. It often is the conclusion of the tour’s “West Coast Swing” early in the calendar year, before the Tour moves east to Florida. The tournament has been held at Riviera CC since 1973 with Genesis Motors taking over sponsorship in 2017, after nine seasons from Northern Trust Corporation.


This Week’s Course(s): Riviera Country Club 

Designer George Thomas pored over 15 possible layouts before settling on one that now features some of the TOUR’s most iconic holes. In 1926, he published a seminal book, Golf Course Architecture in America, in which he stated the goal behind his work: “When you play a course and remember each hole, it has individuality and change. If your mind cannot recall the exact sequence of the holes, that course lacks the great assets of originality and diversity.”   He considered the course at Riviera Country Club to be his masterpiece. It is the only one of his courses that have never been altered.

Scoring Averages and yearly rank:

  • 9/50 .759

Course Numbers  – 7,349 yards – Par 71


The course has three par 5’s, eleven par 4’s (most of which play over par) and four par 3’s and features Poa Annua Greens that will run 12 to 12.6 feet on Tournament Stimpmeter and thus considered semi-fast greens. To make things even more complicated, the green sizes are only 5,000 sq..This is one of the factors that put Riviera in the Hard Course Category since it plays +0.75 strokes Relative to Par (see below for the Par 4 score breakdown and in the Player Preview for correlated “Hard Courses”).

The Average Fairways Hit (Field): 54.3% 

Average Greens in Regulation (Field): 56.5% 

Driving Distance (Field): Average 280 yards 


Last years #s:

  • Winning Score: -12
  • Top 5 Score- -9
  • Cut Number- +3
  • Easiest Hole: 1st hole
  • hardest Hole: 12thhole
  • Best Chance at Streaks: 2,3,4 15-18

DFS Sweatsheet & Scorecard




DFS Preview:

A full preview on the best contests offered in the industry this week.




Player & Statistical Preview:

Player Preview:

This space will merely highlight the golfers competing and their OWGR. For full-field regular events we’ll list out the top 25 ranked golfers by OWGR:

This Weeks top 25:


Statistical Preview:

The PGA Tour has a set of “statistics” that measure golfers performances vs. each other/the rest of the field.  Here is the information on “Strokes Gained” from the winners of the Genesis Open over the last five years:

Average: .879

SG APP Average: 1.18


SG Putting Average: .9815


This is the closest’s we’ve seen all four categories lay close together, showcasing the power of Riveria and needing all parts of the game to be on to win here. The only measured category in all four types that was negative over the five years was James Hahn back in 2015 when he was -.046 in putting. The most substantial difference between them is a half stroke, between around the green (.6) and approaches (1.1). Since we are looking at strokes gained total as a significant barometer this week here’s what the last four weeks look like:


For now, that’s all. I’ll be updating the article the more info we get! Around 5:00 PM EST will be the next one.


Until then,


Cheers! As always message me on Twitter or in the Slack Channel if you have any questions.

Jason established his roots in the littlest state that could...Rhode Island. But after 29 years of bitter cold, and only being able to play golf 4 months a year, upended those roots and moved to Florida. Now two years later, Jason is a husband to Sarah and father of James as well as two Labradors (Choco and Bella) and he dedicates his time to serve as the lead of PGA content at In the time he is not diving into the PGA stats and covering this week's current tournament, you can find him researching and trading stocks, on the golf course, or somewhere hopefully lost in nature with his dogs guiding him along the way. Want to chat? Have a question about Golf/Stocks or anything else? Hop on twitter and give him a message @dfsgolfer23. You can also contact Jason by emailing