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The Winning Element: The Fortinet Championship PGA DFS Picks, Ownership & Rankings | Doug Ghim

Jason Rouslin

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All my PGA DFS content and picks this week are geared toward providing information that will help with your DraftKings and FanDuel daily fantasy golf and PGA odds and betting decisions in the best way possible. With the help of the Awesemo expert , this is the last of the week-long written PGA picks material for DraftKings and FanDuel at the Fortinet Championship.

Article Index

  • Key/Legend
  • Last week recap
  • TV schedule and weather update
  • My entire player pool
  • Notes on the chalkiest players

Key/Legend

The following sections define who will play and what recommended allocation they should receive:

  • Core: We will start with these golfers in every lineup. At least two from my core will be in every one of the lineups.
  • Favorites: We all have our guys, and these are mine. They will be in the player pool at a minimum of 20%.
  • Chalk Zone: These golfers are expected to be the most popular golfers of the week. They are supposed to be widely owned, and so, in a massive GPP, a winning lineup likely will not have more than one of the guys listed in this area.
  • Alternates: On the PGA Tour, alternates are lucky to get in the field each week. However, it happens all the time due to injuries. This section will identify a few lineup alternates that can help fill a lineup and still provide some decent upside.
  • Recommended Allocation: The percentage of time said golfer should be in your lineups, or at least what we are advocating.
  • Projected Ownership: The percentage that the field will have said golfer in their lineups.
  • Variance: The difference between Recommended Allocation and Projected Ownership. A favorable variance gives you leverage.

Last Season’s Recap

While the PGA DFS streets were noticeably harder last year, with the chalk performing much better year over year, it became tougher to beat. Highlights of the season came in just one major, the U.S. Open, and satellite events. The biggest win came in the Dominican Republic, where I won the $555 Signature Hole. That $20,000 hit kept me afloat for quite a lot of the season, but ultimately it was not a positive DFS Season. On the other hand, however, favorites Patrick Cantlay, Jordan Spieth and Collin Morikawa won a combined 10 times on the season, making it a very profitable betting year. Longer shots like Cameron Champ at the 3M Open and Joel Dahmen back at the Dominican also helped add to the returns. Add on a couple of obvious winners, like Jon Rahm at the U.S. Open, and I hit the winner just shy of 20 times in 51 tournaments.

PGA DFS Picks This Week | The Fortinet Championship

If this is your first time joining, I pick 6 to 12 players per week as part of the core, which earn the highest allocation on DFS and are matched with bets across the board.

Weather

The morning temperatures will be in the mid-50s, warming up to a comfortable mid-70s by the afternoon. No wind issues are expected either, but there may be some rain over the weekend.

Slate Preview

Total expected player pool: 60

Expected number of lineups created: 300+

Top Picks for DraftKings and FanDuel

These golfers will have anywhere between 20% and 50% allocation this week.

Jon Rahm ($12,100 DraftKings/$12,500 FanDuel)

Ownership does not matter when the odds are so heavily in Rahm’s favor this week. Right now his projection is somewhere north of 40%, which is warranted. This is like the Tiger Woods days when no matter where he showed up to play he was there to win. Rahm has that same mentality and has rarely in his few years on tour let anyone down. He should be priced at $13,500, but at just $12,100, he is not even all that expensive, especially if this tournament stays true to its history in producing plenty of solid lower-priced, lower-owned options.

Harold Varner ($9,100 DraftKings/$10,900 FanDuel)

Varner’s course history is fantastic, and so is his recent form. He has come in the top 15 four times in his last six starts, with just one missed cut mixed in. And since Varner really only gets into trouble off the tee, so it makes sense why someone with as good of a wedge game as him would find success around these parts. Also, it is a lot easier to fit in four other golfers around Rahm and Varner, as opposed to paying up for Webb Simpson or Will Zalatoris. They will make complement lineups that do not include Rahm.

Cameron Champ ($9,000 DraftKings/$10,800 FanDuel)

Champ’s price is high, but the form has been much better since the John Deere Classic two months ago, including the win at the 3M Open. He is from this area and has won before, and his better form and lower salary earn Champ a spot. He is the lowest-allocated core player above $7,500, but he will get heavier GPP allocation.

Emiliano Grillo ($8,900 DraftKings/$10,300 FanDuel)

Grillo is one of four golfers in this range, including Varner, that had good seasons but never won. If Rahm does not win this week, Varner, Grillo or the next two core plays, Charley Hoffman and Maverick McNealy, could pull it out. Grillo’s season was highlighted by a second-place finish at the RBC Heritage and a 12th-place finish at the British Open. It was his best season since 2016, when he rose all the to 25th in the world. A former winner of the event (2015), Grillo has also made the cut in four of his five other trips to Napa Valley.

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Charley Hoffman ($8,800 DraftKings/$10,500 FanDuel)

With a near win at the Valero Texas Open this year, Hoffman endured his best season since 2017. By combining a strong approach game with a very streaky putter, he proved to be quite reliable in DFS scoring. He has the qualities to compete here but has failed to do so in his last three trips, making the cut only once and coming in 56th. That could be the reason ownership is a bit tapered on him this week, as he looks to buck the trend and put up a good finish here.

Maverick McNealy ($8,600 DraftKings/$10,200 FanDuel)

McNealy’s last top-10 was all the way back at the RBC Heritage in April. However, he has not missed a cut eight starts and has come in the top 30 seven of the eight times. He is familiar with Northern California, hailing from the Pebble Beach area, and he has made the cut three times in four trips here.

Stephan Jaeger ($8,200 DraftKings/$9,800 FanDuel)

Jaeger’s first stint on the PGA Tour did not go quite as planned, but after some difficult times through the pandemic, Jaeger came out with a renewed sense of confidence. After fantastic year on the Korn Ferry Tour, Jaeger will have the No. 1 priority ranking. His statistical fit with this course is perfect. He only struggles with accuracy off the tee, but he has a good iron game and an in-form short game. Jaeger should be able to get off to a great start this season, putting to rest some of the pain of losing his card the last time he played on the PGA Tour.

Doug Ghim ($7,900 DraftKings/$9,700 FanDuel)

After a few years on tour, Ghim finally found a bit of a stride last year, putting himself into contention a few times at big-time events. In doing so, Ghim easily maintained his card and moved up over 160 spots in the official world golf ranking. Now it is possible that Silverado Resort and this tournament could be his best statistical fit all year. There is no need to fade that, especially when the price is reasonable.

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Sahith Theegala ($7,400/$8,900)

After playing well enough in his starts last year, which included a 14th-place finish here at this tournament, Theegala was able to qualify for the Korn Ferry Tour Finals. He came in fourth in the second event, which was just three weeks ago, and followed that up with a sixth-place finish two weeks ago. Those two finishes gave him plenty of points to earn his PGA Tour card through the Korn Ferry Tour Finals. Riding in on a high, and with good course fit and history, Theegala should be able to jumpstart his career with a good finish this week.


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PGA Picks Under or at $7,200 this week

These golfers will have anywhere between 15% and 25% allocation this week.

Hudson Swafford ($7,200 DraftKings/$8,600 FanDuel)

Having just missed the Tour Championship, Swafford will be back this year, finally breaking out of his couple-year slump. He was plagued by injuries over the last few years, but Swafford was able to bounce back, pick up a win at the Corales Puntacana Championship towards the end of last season. He followed that up with another tie for sixth at the same event a few months later. He would add a tie for second at the Palmetto Championship, which all but assured him a spot in the playoffs. There he notched back-to-back top-17 finishes against the world’s best, falling just shy of the top 30. He is back at Silverado this week for the fifth time since 2015, making the weekend in all four of his other appearances.

Chad Ramey ($7,000 DraftKings /$9,900 FanDuel)

Ramey finally had his breakthrough. He has accumulated only two starts on the PGA Tour since turning pro in 2015, making the cut in 2018 at the Sanderson Farms. Ramey endured one of the most consistent seasons ever on the Korn Ferry Tour, making 40 of 43 cuts over the long season. He has not missed a cut in the calendar year, and in his 21 starts since the first of the year, Ramey has only finished outside the top 37 three times, and 16 saw him finish inside the top 20.

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Chesson Hadley ($7,000 DraftKings/$7,800 FanDuel)

Hadley was the best story to come out of the FedEx Cup playoffs. Playing his final 14 holes at the Wyndham Championship, Hadley needed something extra special to get inside the top 125. That special thing happened, as he made a hole-in-one early in his round, which qualified him for the playoffs. He sadly missed the cut at The Northern Trust because of his opening-round 75, which gave him basically no chance at playing the weekend. It was a year of near misses for Hadley up to that point, and he held the lead at the Palmetto Championship for a long portion of that event. He will look to start his year off on the right foot, as he has done here, finishing in the top 23 three times in the last five years.

Brandon Wu ($6,400 DraftKings/$7,900 FanDuel)

Wu decided to stay in college at Stanford a bit longer and remained an amateur, even though he graduated the same year as Collin Morikawa, Viktor Hovland and Justin Suh. Wu’s decision to stay in college and play in the Walker Cup might have cost him the ability to play on the PGA Tour a bit earlier, as he did not get in enough starts to earn membership before COVID-19 hit. He then had to endure another year on the Korn Ferry Tour and played very well before securing his card towards the beginning of the season. Wu’s long road to get to the PGA should provide him plenty of opportunities. Wu is from Danville, Calif., one of the closest areas to this tournament. That should make him very familiar with the terrain and comfortable to play his first start on the PGA Tour as a member.

PGA DFS Chalk Zone (Projected for 10%+ Ownership)

E= Equal-Weight to projected ownership.

U= Underweight to projected ownership.

O= Overweight to projected ownership.

  1. Hideki Matsuyama (U)
  2. Webb Simpson (E to U)
  3. Will Zalatoris (E to O)
  4. Cameron Triangle (U)
  5. Kevin Na (E to U)
  6. Sebastian Munoz (E to O)
  7. Talor Gooch (E)
  8. Pat Perez (E to U)
  9. Patton Kizzire (E to U)
  10. Tyler McCumber (U)

Fringe PGA DFS Picks (12-17% of Lineups)

  1. Marc Leishman
  2. Max Homa
  3. Chez Reavie
  4. Mito Pereira
  5. Roger Sloan
  6. Lucas Herbert
  7. Taylor Moore
  8. Harry Higgs
  9. Brendan Steele
  10. Aaron Rai
  11. Beau Hossler

Alternates (6-11% of Lineups)

  1. Si Woo Kim
  2. Brendon Todd
  3. Brandt Snedeker
  4. Phil Mickelson
  5. Adam Hadwin
  6. Charles Howell III
  7. C.T. Pan
  8. Dylan Frittelli
  9. Lanto Griffin
  10. Nick Taylor
  11. Kiradech Aphibarnrat
  12. Adam Schenk
  13. Joseph Bramlett
  14. Doc Redman
  15. J.T. Poston
  16. Greyson Sigg
  17. Tom Hoge
  18. Russell Knox
  19. Luke List
  20. Adam Svensson
  21. Hayden Buckley
  22. Sam Ryder
  23. Andrew Putnam
  24. Trey Mullinax

Holes in One (1-5% of Lineups)

  1. Sepp Straka
  2. Brian Stuard
  3. Brice Garnett
  4. Kyle Stanley
  5. Brandon Hagy
  6. Kevin Tway
  7. J.B. Holmes
  8. Nick Hardy
  9. Quade Cummins
  10. Chase Seiffert
  11. Patrick Rodgers

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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 Awesemo.com. 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 [email protected].

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