With the PGA Tour season underway, we have a ton of formats to break down, and the great thing about golf is that it runs all year. In addition to PGA DFS and betting, there is another format that is set to begin with the season kicking off. One and Done pools are largely ready to go, and we have you covered here at Awesemo. If you aren’t familiar, this is one of the most fun formats of any type of golf contest, and I’m excited to bring you content every week breaking down the field and providing some PGA One and Done picks. As the season gets underway, we will also be reviewing strategies and the previous week’s results to examine who was popular and who took down some big money.
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What is a One and Done pool?
A One and Done pool has some similarities with NFL survivor pools except that you cannot be eliminated early for making a poor pick. Each week you have to select one golfer, and their prize money earned that week become your points. You cannot use the same player twice, just like an NFL survivor contest, so strategy and knowing when to save a top-tier player can make the difference. At the end of the season, the team with the most cumulative earning is in line for a big payoff. Your pool will pay several spots, depending on its size, similar to a GPP structure that we all know from PGA DFS.
Sony Open One and Done Picks
If you are willing to burn a big name to start the season, then Webb Simpson is where I would go. He is the tourney favorite and absolutely loves teeing it up at the Sony Open. Simpson finished third last year and fourth in 2019, gaining more than 10 strokes in both events. He comes in following a mediocre Tournament of Champions showing (17th), but there is no doubt that Simpson should be in contention here once again come Sunday.
Berger managed to rack up another top-10, albeit in a small field last week, with his 10th-place in the Tournament of Champions. Berger only missed one cut in 2020 and racked up 11 top-20 finishes, which is the safety and stability we want to see when looking for potential One and Done picks. He now gets a par-70 Bermuda track, which is right in his wheelhouse, making Berger one of the favorites on the PGA betting market this week.
Also Considering: Sungjae Im
As a One and Done pick, this may not be as aggressive as Simpson or Berger, but Kevin Kisner is another reasonable option this week. He has three top-five finishes at Sony over his last five appearances and has continuously proven he can take down any tournament when the game is in form. The status of his game is a question mark after a sub-par effort tee to green last week. He lost 3.8 strokes at the Tournament of Champions. Still, this is a guy with upside, and his combination of iron play and putting has resulted in some big earnings in recent years.
Also Considering: Charles Howell III
Under the Radar
Leishman completely lost his game in 2020 but may have found something during the brief offseason. He returned last week at Sentry and gained 4.3 strokes tee to green, his best since the Arnold Palmer back in March of 2020. In addition, he lost 5.1 strokes putting, which limited the finishing position and could throw off some people considering using him for a One and Done. There is some definite risk in taking a zero here if he misses the cut, but this could also be a time to put Leishman on your shortlist of PGA One and Done picks in a weak field.
With a One and Done format, you really aren’t incentivized to reach too far down, as you only need to play one golfer a week for the season. That means many players aren’t going to be used and the risk of playing a guy who has red flags is big. Taking a zero is never the outcome that we want. In a high-variance sport like golf, it is probably going to happen, but weighing the risk-reward is the name of the game. If you are looking for an aggressive, against-the-grain play, Scott Piercy fits the mold. He actually has fantastic course history, making six straight cuts at Sony, including a runner-up finish back in 2015.
The problem with Piercy is that he hasn’t found a top-10 on tour since Waste Management in February 2020. This is despite making cuts with some regularity. He comes into Sony having made six straight cuts dating back to September, but the best finish of the bunch was 14th. He is a pure ball striker who knows the course, and as a dark horse among One and Done picks, he makes sense.
My One and Done Pick: Daniel Berger
I’m going to get my fantasy golf and PGA betting season started with Berger in a few ways. He has consistently shown the ability to find the weekend and cash a check, even without his best stuff. Last week was a perfect example of a 10th-place showing despite losing slightly with the putter. He now gets a par-70 Bermuda, a surface that he has crushed in his career, with multiple wins at the St. Jude and a runner-up at the Honda. In particular the Honda Classic is a great comp course, and seeing Berger have success there is another reason to like him. The other benefit is I am not a huge believer in Berger overall, so I have zero hesitation in using him this early in the season in what looks like a good spot. With so many big names missing from the field, this is a perfect time to use him, which is how I will kick off what is sure to be a fun 2021 season playing out my PGA One and Done picks.
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