A week ahead of The Masters and the PGA pros head to San Antonio for the 100th anniversary of the Valero Texas Open. Former Texas Longhorn and Dallas resident Jordan Spieth is the defending champion, and he's joined by tournament favorite Rory McIlroy at +700 odds, 2019 Valero Texas Open champion Corey Connors and 2021 Masters champ Hideki Matsuyama.
Another top 20 golfer is in the field as No. 14 Bryson DeChambeau tees it up this week along with world No. 16 Abraham Ancer, who lives just down the road from TPC San Antonio, practicing there throughout the off-season.
Twenty upcoming Masters participants are playing at TPC San Antonio, which is a par 72 that plays to 7,438 yards.
But beyond the favorites and popular picks to win the Valero Texas Open, here are three dark horse picks that could make a run up the leaderboard with a top finishing position or victory.
Valero Texas Open Picks
1. Brendan Steele (+5000)
Brendan Steele has made the cut here in each of the last six editions including T8 and T13. He also won this event in 2011. His odds have dropped as a dark horse to watch. Steele's putting is usually his problem, but he's a most reliable driver of the ball and Steele ranks top 25 across nearly every strokes gained category over his career playing TPC San Antonio. His improved form has seen him finish well his last two events this month against stronger fields where he posted elite Tee-to-Green stats and gained solid strokes on approach to the green.
2. Maverick McNealy (+3400)
Maverick McNealy is a former No. 1 ranked amateur who is hitting his stride on the PGA Tour. The 26-year-old has eight top 30 finishes this season and played well at last week's WGC-Match Play going 2-0-1. He makes his debut at TPC San Antonio, but his stats are strong ranking top-6 in strokes gained total over his last 50 rounds including top 20 in putting, short game, ball striking and tee-to-green.
3. Adam Hadwin (+3300)
Take a look at Good Drives Gained, and you'll see Canadian Adam Hadwin top 8 in this field over his last 50 rounds, along with tournament favorites Corey Connors and San Antonio resident Abraham Ancer. Hadwin is an elite putter and short game specialist who enters off back-to-back top 10 finishes with solid Approach play stats. With Around-the-Green and Approach play stats key metrics for players that can position their tee shots well, Hadwin should go well as one of the most accurate players from the tee and stronger Greens in Regulation stats. Hadwin, along with the two players above, are all +400 to +500 to finish top 10.