Golf

THE PLAYERS Championship: Daily Fantasy Picks and Helper

Zack Bussiere
Zack Bussiere@ZackBussiere
THE PLAYERS Championship: Daily Fantasy Picks and Helper

Coming off Scottie Scheffler’s dominant five-stroke win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the PGA Tour heads to TPC Sawgrass for THE PLAYERS Championship.

Here's all you need to know for this week’s iconic event.

THE PLAYERS Championship Event Info

  • Recent Winning Scores: -17, -13, -14, -9*, -16
  • Recent Cut Lines: +2, +2, E, N/A*, -1

*In 2020, THE PLAYERS Championship was canceled after Round 1 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

TPC Sawgrass (Stadium) Course Info

All course data from GCSAA unless otherwise noted.

  • Par: 72
  • Distance: 7,275
  • Average Fairway Width: 30.7 yards (26th of 87 courses)
  • Average Green Size: 5,500
  • Green Type: Poa
  • Stimpmeter: N/A

TPC Sawgrass (Stadium) Key Stats

THE PLAYERS Championship Daily Fantasy Targets

These picks stand out relative to their FanDuel daily fantasy golf salary. All stats cited below originate at datagolf and reference ranks relative to the field over the past 50 rounds unless otherwise noted. All betting odds come from the golf odds at FanDuel Sportsbook.

THE PLAYERS Championship Daily Fantasy Studs

Scottie Scheffler ($12,000 | +550)

For a while now, we have been wondering what it would look like if Scottie Scheffler, the best tee-to-green player in the world, was even an average putter. At the Arnold Palmer Invitational, debuting a new mallet-style putter, Scheffler skipped a few steps in that journey to average and finished fifth in the field in strokes gained: putting (+1.48 strokes gained per round) on his way to a five-stroke victory.

Putting was the only thing missing from Scheffler’s game, and he just finished fifth in strokes gained: putting in his first week with a new putter -- against an elite field. Scheffler improved his putting in each round of the event. After a -1.59 strokes gained: putting on Thursday, he improved to +0.54 on Friday and +1.51 on Saturday before a masterclass +3.89 on Sunday.

The question now is, can he maintain it?

If he does, the sky is the limit. In his last 11 events where he gained strokes putting, Scheffler has four wins, nine top fives, and ten top 10s. His worst finish was a T12.

This week, Scheffler is first in the field in strokes gained: tee to green, strokes gained: approach, and total strokes gained, and he is second in strokes gained: off the tee and seventh in strokes gained: around the green. He is 123rd out of 144 golfers in strokes gained: putting -- but if he maintains even a semblance of his form from last weekend, that won’t be as much of a concern.

Thanks to his ball striking, Scheffler has had the highest weekly floor of any golfer for a while now. If his putting is here to stay, he now has ceiling outcomes like we saw last week. He is the defending champion this week and has gained strokes putting in each of his last two appearances at TPC Sawgrass.

At +550 odds to win THE PLAYERS Championship, Scheffler is the clear betting favorite. Only one other golfer -- Rory McIlroy (+1200) -- has odds shorter than +2000 (as of Tuesday morning).

Will Zalatoris ($10,700 | +3000)

Will Zalatoris’ comeback from last year’s season-ending back injury, which required surgery, has been well documented. After a slow start in his first two events, including a missed cut at the Sony Open, his comeback now appears to be ahead of schedule. Since that missed cut, he has been trending in the right direction, with finishes of T34, T13, T2, and T4.

Zalatoris’ game has been impressively complete. He has gained strokes putting, strokes on approach, and strokes off the tee in each of his last four events. His -0.09 strokes gained: around the green at last week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational was the first time he has lost strokes in any category since his missed cut at the Sony Open.

TPC Sawgrass demands excellent approach play and accuracy off the tee. Zalatoris has always been exceptional with his irons, and since his injury, he has lost some distance off the tee but has been more accurate -- he has hit a higher percentage of fairways than the field in each of his last three events. Last week, Zalatoris finished 10th in the field in strokes gained: approach and 3rd in strokes gained: off the tee, hitting 14% more fairways than the field.

Others to Consider:

  1. Xander Schauffele ($11,800 | +2000)
  2. Viktor Hovland ($11,600 | +2500)
  3. Collin Morikawa ($11,400 | +3000)
  4. Jordan Speith ($10,600 | +3300)

THE PLAYERS Championship Daily Fantasy Mid-Range Plays

Shane Lowry ($9,900 | +3500)

Shane Lowry enters this week in excellent form, with finishes of T4 and 3rd in his last two events. Lowry has played each of his last eight rounds at even par or better, with a combined score of -17. Considering the difficulty of PGA National and Bay Hill, that’s no small feat.

Lowry’s game is a decent fit for TPC Sawgrass, and he has had success here in recent seasons, with finishes of T35, T13, and 8th since 2021. Lowry is ranked inside the top 50 in all strokes gained categories and is 23rd in total strokes gained and 21st in accuracy. He has hit at least 10% more fairways than the field in each of his five events this season.

Si Woo Kim ($9,700 | +5000)

Si Woo Kim is having a solid but unspectacular 2024, with no finishes worse than T44 but no finishes better than T12. The flat stick continues to be a problem as Kim is fourth-worst in the field in strokes gained: putting but is third in accuracy and has one of datagolf’s best course fits this week.

Kim has gained strokes on approach and off the tee in all seven of his events this season. He has a hit-or-miss track record at TPC Sawgrass, with two top 10s (including his win in 2017), two top 30s, and two finishes outside the top 50 in his six completed events. His approach play at THE PLAYERS has been exceptional -- excluding his WD in 2022, he has gained at least +1.96 strokes on approach per round in his last three appearances.

Others to Consider:

  1. Corey Conners ($9,600 | +6000)
  2. Russell Henley ($9,500 | +5000)
  3. Tom Hoge ($9,100 | +6000)

THE PLAYERS Championship Daily Fantasy Values

Aaron Rai ($8,600 | +8000)

Aaron Rai is first in the field in accuracy and 129th in distance. With an increased focus on accuracy this week, his lack of distance won’t impact him as much as usual. Rai is coming off finishes of T23 and T19 in his last two events and finished T19 at his debut appearance at THE PLAYERS Championship last season.

Rai also struggles with the flat stick. He is 134th in strokes gained: putting but is 31st in the field in both strokes gained: approach and strokes gained: off the tee. He is 25th in strokes gained: tee to green and 69th in par 5 scoring, slightly above the tour average.

Nick Taylor ($8,300 | +12000)

Since winning this year’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, Nick Taylor has finished T39 at The Genesis Invitational and T12 at least week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational. Like Rai, Taylor also lacks distance (124th in the field) but is 55th in accuracy. At a difficult Bay Hill last week, Taylor gained strokes in all categories. He is 24th in the field in strokes gained: putting and 17th in strokes gained: approach.

Others to Consider:

  • Emiliano Grillo ($8,700 | +10000)
  • Doug Ghim ($8,400 | +11000)
  • Erik Van Rooyen ($8,400 | +12000)

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.