PGA One and Done season continues this week with the Farmers Insurance Open. There are some world-class players in the field, so it’s a decision of whether you want to go up top for a big name or save them for bigger tournaments down the line. Last week going up top with Patrick Cantlay resulted in a nice payday, and many people also had tournament winner Si Woo Kim, which added over $1 million to their One-and-Done total. Let’s get into some PGA one and done picks
What is a One-and-Done pool?
A one-and-one 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.
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Cantlay was my pick last week, as I wanted to be conservative to begin the season. I also didn’t mind burning him because he wasn’t someone I wanted to go to in a major this year, so getting him as a tournament favorite was appealing. He made the cut on the number but went nuclear on Sunday to finish second and take home a big $730,000 payday. That is a nice result for anyone who decided to use Cantlay, and it could turn out to be the ideal spot for him this season.
Wolff was another guy in consideration for a lot of people, and although he found the weekend, it wasn’t the finish owners were looking for. The 40th-place result netted him $25,000 which is better than a missed cut, but miles behind guys like Cantlay. Wolff is a volatile player who is going to have some high-upside weeks while also throwing in results like we saw this past week. Still, having him available is a win, and you can look to potentially deploy him in a lot of different spots this season.
This was a landmine for One and Done, as Champ was unable to find any form and missed the cut, resulting in the goose egg. That is what we want to avoid at all costs, and it was a disappointing showing from a guy with this kind of talent. The one positive is Champ wasn’t someone to worry about saving, but it was still a poor finish that sets those that rostered him back.
Farmers Insurance Open PGA One and Done Picks
The goal of One-and-Done pools is to find winners, so how could we possibly go to Finau, who seems allergic to finding the winner’s circle? He is such a talent but seemingly always comes up short and still is stuck on one PGA Tour victory. I am not going to say there isn’t something to why he seemingly doesn’t finish on Sunday, but I strongly feel the narrative is overblown, and his resume will add more and more wins as the years go on.
In the meantime, we will have to settle for massively consistent performances, which we saw against last week with a fourth-place finish. Finau gained 9.4 strokes tee to green and comes to an event where he has finished 13th or better in four straight years. He loves this course, and this is as good of time to use him as any in One and Done.
If you didn’t get to Wolff last week, this could be a sneaky bounce-back spot. Most people aren’t high on him after that average-at-best finish, but this is still a young player who is going to have volatile swings. He gained 3.2 with the irons last week and can flip the putter at any time, which is where the upside comes from. In his first appearance at the Farmers last year, he finished 21st and was positive with the irons, which is the key to dealing with this tough test. Wolff proved last year he can handle both easy and tough tracks given his runner-up at the U.S. Open, and this could be an under-the-radar play to jump up the leaderboard if Wolff brings his top form.
Under the Radar
To close out 2020 we saw Woodland’s form completely go away with three missed cuts and a 72nd over the final four tournaments. The worry was that he was playing through injury, and that is clearly why the game didn’t resemble the top-end player he is. Coming into last week, it was a question about where his game and health were, but the 16th-place finish was extremely encouraging.
Woodland looks to be healthy and ready to go in 2021, and his ball-striking numbers from last week show that. He gained four strokes tee to green, and it looks like the time off allowed him to rest up and retool. He now comes to a course where he can lean on his driving abilities, and many people still aren’t focused on Woodland due to the poor form last year. If you want to get on a guy early before the masses take notice, this is an interesting spot to take a shot with a talent like Woodland. He is similar to Marc Leishman in that his form has returned early in 2021 and paid dividends to those who targeted him already.
My PGA One and Done Pick: Tony Finau
The strategy of being very conservative has worked so far with Daniel Berger and Cantlay, so I still am able to stay very generic and solidify a good start to the season. Finau may not win enough, but he is super consistent and is coming off another top-five finish, which is serious One-and-Done money. He has the length to handle Torrey Pines and can add some valuable cash to the bank even if the win eludes him. I will gladly back a guy playing this well and going to a course that I think suits his game perfectly, even if he will be one of the more popular One-and-Done choices this week for the Farmers Insurance Open.
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