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The First Cut: PGA DFS Course & Player Breakdown for the Rocket Mortgage Classic

Jason Rouslin

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Loughy, Ben and Josh discuss the major news of the day, including the latest info on when MLB, NBA, NFL and other sports are going to return.

The return to some normalcy is likely going to be a gradual process rather than a sprint. Being able to sit down and write this article every Sunday sets my entire PGA DFS week. This is the first installment in our weekly PGA content for DraftKings, FanDuel and SuperDraft, breaking down everything you need to know for the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

If this is your first time reading the article, or you’ve simply forgotten all about PGA DFS, then I’ll give you a quick summary of what’s to come:

  • Tournament Intro
  • Course Breakdown and DFS Sweatsheet
  • Player Preview
  • Statistical Preview

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Tournament Intro: Rocket Mortgage Classic

The first playing of this tournament was just last year, and it was a resounding success, so the Tour has no problem coming back. Rickie Fowler comes back for a second straight year as the tournament host and spokesmen for Quicken Loans. Last year, we had our first alternate win a tournament that wasn’t a part of the player pool, following up Corey Conners’ win as a Monday qualifier at the Valero. That led DraftKings to add almost every additional golfer into the player pool.

Let’s turn our attention now to Detroit Golf Club.

Tournament Format

There are 156 players with the top 65 and ties making the cut after 36 holes.

Course Commentary: Detroit Golf Club

Finally, we step out of the Peter Dye series of golf courses and onto an old Donald Ross design. Like, try 1916. Detroit Golf Club finally got a PGA Tournament back last year, and proved to be a fun track for those that attended. On average, for a par 72, it is on the shorter side of average. That will typically make it much easier than other courses in terms of scoring average.

Course Profile

Par and Yardage 

  • Par 72: 7,330

Course Difficulty 2019 

  • 42/49: Just shy of 1.9 strokes under par.

Hole Dispersion

  • Four par 3s: 167, 207, 233, 160
  • 10 par 4s: 397, 453, 393, 461, 372, 425, 549, 393, 446, 455
  • Four par 5s: 635, 552, 555, 577

Grass Types & Hazards (if available) 

  • Grass Type: Bent
  • Average green size: 5,100 sq feet.
  • Water Hazards: 1
  • Number of Bunkers: 87

Designer 

  • Donald Ross — redesigned by Robert Trent Jones

Facts and Figures

The front nine plays about a quarter of a stroke easier than the back.

  • Off the Tee: This proved to be one of the most accessible courses to drive on last year with an average drive of 304 yards. It also ranked as one of the top-20 easiest in terms of fairways to hit at just over 64%, a big reason why we saw such low scores.
  • Approach to the green: With long drives and easier fairways to hit, it is no surprise to see greens in regulation coming in at over 72%. Proximity to the hole ranked 29th out of 49th last year at 33 feet per approach shot.
  • Around the Green: With 87 bunkers on the course, Don Ross uses them to guard the course as best he can. They were some of the hardest bunkers last year with an average sand save of less than 50%.
  • On the Green: Donald Ross greens are always back to front, which means you just never want to be above the hole. They can get quick in a hurry. The greens at Detroit Golf Club were in the top-20 hardest last year.

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Sweatsheet and Commentary 

No holes get over 10% of the score this week, while no holes get under 3.5%. That means there are tons of bride streak chances this week. Judging by the percentages and number of birdies for each hole, it looks like 3, 4, 5 could be the best opportunity fora birdie streak, but with the easiness of the course and each hole having a good chance at birdie, there should be plenty of streaks this week.

Player Preview

The Expected Top-30 Players in the Field by OWGR and Corresponding Odds

While we are used to seeing eight or nine of the top 10 in the world, and upwards of 16 or 17 of the top 20, this week we have a bit of an off week for some of the world’s best. We have only six of the top 20 and three of the world’s top 10 if we include Bryson DeChambeau, who is expected to move inside after the finish at the Travelers.

Previous Winners & Cutline:

  • 2019: Nate Lashley (-25) and the cut line was -4.

Statistical Comparison

  • Driving Accuracy vs. Driving Distance: Nate Lashley isn’t one of the longest hitters on Tour, be he isn’t one of the shortest either. If we extend out to the top 10, we find a good mixture of players, with some shorter hitters like Patrick Reed, Brandt Snedeker and Ted Potter Jr. and some bombers like Wes Roach, Doc Redman and Sepp Straka. 
  • Strokes Gained Tee to Green Analysis: This is really a shocker, maybe one of the first times I’ve seen this, but not one golfer in the entire field last year gained more than one stroke off the tee on average for the week. Most of the strokes are gained on the approach, where Lashley, the winner, ranked fifth last year. He obviously putted so much better than everyone else because he only gained roughly two strokes on the field tee to green.
  • Putting; How good do they need to be here?:  With scoring so low, one needs to be a good putter. But with the easiness of the golf course, one could have a ton of chances on the week. That will undoubtedly help the better putters.

Related PGA Content

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 support@awesemo.com.

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