The Duel

3 Dark Horse Golf Picks to Win the 2021 Northern Trust on FanDuel Sportsbook

Joaquin Niemann is among the dark horse picks for the 2021 Northern Trust.
Joaquin Niemann is among the dark horse picks for the 2021 Northern Trust. / Chris Trotman/Getty Images

The FedExCup Playoffs begin with The Northern Trust, and this year's rotating course event returns to Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City. That's where longshot and dark horse Patrick Reed cashed in for victory in 2019 with golf odds of +5000 to win.

The usual favorites are at the top of the odds board to win at FanDuel Sportsbook with Jon Rahm topping the list and Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka and Xander Schauffele all checking in at +2200 or less.

But there can be better options to consider when looking for value and dark horses that can win or cash in on top finishing position and prop bets.

Here are three dark horses to consider for your golf betting this week at The Northern Trust.

The Northern Trust Golf 2021 Dark Horses

1. Justin Thomas (+2700)

Here's a top-ranked player ranked among the best in the world who's odds to win have fallen closer to golfers and non-major winners like Abraham Ancer, Daniel Berger, Patrick Cantlay and Scottie Scheffler. Thomas still belongs in the top-tier with odds closer to players like Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy. Justin Thomas finished T12 at this course in 2019, and while his results have not met top-10 level in months, it's mostly the problem of poor putting. Still, Thomas ranks top-6 in birdies gained over his last 36 rounds, and he remains among the best ball strikers and also ranks top-7 in tee-to-green and approach. Strong approach play similar to his recent WGC event and we'll likely see better putting follow at playoff time.

2. Joaquin Niemann (+7000)

Joaquin Niemann has too long of odds for a player that ranks top-10 in scoring on Tour this season. His combination of distance and accuracy will pay off on this course, where he finished T30 in 2019 and has improved greatly since his FedExCup Playoffs debut. Niemann ranks highly in this field in ball striking, and he's gained strokes on the green in 10 of his last 11 U.S. events. His strong iron play, and especially from 175-200 yards will be to his advantage at Liberty National. Add in consistently strong tee-to-green and approach stats gained on the field this year, and you can see why he enters the Playoffs in the top 20 of the FedExCup points standings.

3. Russell Henley(+7500)

Russell Henley ranks No. 1 in this strong field in strokes gained tee-to-green and approach over his last 36 rounds. A live long shot and dark horse for sure if his putting improves, as Henley put it together for more than three rounds last week only to blow the final round lead and miss the 6-man playoff by one shot following a bogey on the 72nd hole. Henley has still gained strokes across the board in his last three U.S. events, and is No. 1 in bogey avoidance over his last 36 rounds. Henley has also finished top-20 in four straight stateside tournaments.

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