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FantasyDFSExperts Picks for the Farmers Insurance Open: Jan 28-31, 2021

John Rahm Being Rahmbo
OLYMPIA FIELDS, ILLINOIS - AUGUST 30 : Jon Rahm of Spain reacts to his putt on the 18th hole, the first and only playoff hole, during the final round of the BMW Championship at Olympia Fields Country Club (North) on August 30, 2020 in Olympia Fields, IL. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire)

Congratulations to Si Woo Kim ($8,900 DK $10,200 FD) 265 (-23) for winning the American Express last week. There is a 152-player full field this week, with a 36-hole cut. The defending champion, Marc Leishman ($8,700 DK $10,400 FD), won last year at 273 (-15), over Jon Rahm ($11,300 DK $12,100 FD) at 274 (-14). The tournament will be contested over the Torrey Pines North and South courses prior to the cut on Friday. Then the weekend rounds will only be on the South Course. The Torrey Pines South course will also host the upcoming U.S. Open June 17-20, 2021.   

This week at the (Torrey Pines South Course ) course it will play to a Par of 72 at 7,765 yards. The Torrey Pines North Course course will play to a par of 72 at 7,258 yards. The tees, fairway, and rough areas are all kikuyu grass. The greens on the North Course are primarily bent grass with some poa annua creeping in despite four years into the redesign work of Tom Weiskopf. The greens on the South Course are primarily poa annua. Expect the putting surfaces to be running at 11.5 feet or more on the stimpmeter. The South course was renovated prior to the 2008 U.S. Open by Rees Jones. The South course is the longest on the PGA Tour, and the North course is no pushover as it used to be, since the redesign, it averages just under par annually for the PGA Tour field. 

The (Farmers Insurance Open Weather Forecast ) Thursday through Sunday, is for chilly temperature highs ranging from 59 degrees on Thursday down to 52 degrees on Saturday, with wind reaching up to 14 to 15 miles per hour on Friday out of the W; Thursday, reaching 11 to 12 miles per hour out of the SSE; Saturday, 8 to 9 miles per hour out of the NW; and Sunday 9 to 10 miles per hour out of the NNW. It appears the most challenging tee time split will be Friday on the South Course when it is expected to rain (70 percent) to get by the cut, so you might want to link on to the weather report above to check the hour by hour for Thursday and Friday course groupings and tee times before selecting your rosters.  

The (Farmers Insurance Open ) has produced winners that have predominantly gained strokes with putting, off the tee, and ball striking, in that order. ShotLink stats are only available for the South Course, so this analogy primarily applies to where the competitors that make the cut play three of four rounds. The majority of the previous champions here have been accurate drivers of the ball and long, hit a high percentage of greens, without many three putts on the greens they hit, and taking advantage of opportunities inside ten feet. Course history is important to keep in mind here at Torrey Pines, along with the competitors that are in good form and trending favorably in the most important stat categories coming into this event. The weather will also play a factor this week, with cold, windy, conditions making the longest course on Tour play that much longer and more challenging.    

In addition to thoroughly combing through the stats prior to preparing my weekly FantasyDFSExperts recommendations, I review other expert’s opinions, I personally evaluate and view players weekly that are covered on television; I also consider recent form, tournament history, as well as current momentum and confidence a player exudes, especially in the aspects of their game that are most important to win or to have a high finish this week.      

FantasyDFSExperts will provide three core roster picks to assist you in building a winning team of six for a weekly competitive GPP play. Then exclusively for FantasyDFSExperts members, I will make additional predictions and recommendations to build the balance of your lineup with supporting statistical and trending analysis from the entire field. 

Last season I provided valuable insights each week leading to the majority of those recommendations making the cut from the bottom third of the salary rankings to allow you to stack your lineup with top players with a high probability to win. When a different play is in order, I will structure my recommendations, accordingly, emphasizing the proper ratio of leaders, core, and dark horse, salary ranked players, to produce a winning ticket. In the 2020 season I predicted several winner’s out of the core category, and even out of the dark horse category, such as Stewart Cink, at the Safeway Classic. I also faded on favorites such as Bryson DeChambeau at The Masters, after he had won the U.S. Open only weeks before, because I did not feel his style of play and-or course history justified his salary, and he would not finish in the top 10 to 20 that week, which proved to be right on the money. I rely not only stats, but intuition and 30+ years of experience in the golf industry as a competitor, instructor, and coach. Knowing a competitor’s game and tendencies in a variety of environments “under the gun,” along with passing the eyeball test from week to week, produced a high probability of accurate predictions in 2020, my first year of providing this service for FantasyDFSExperts members.  

Last week at The American Express my free picks that shined in front of the Paywall were: Patrick Cantlay (2nd), Chris Kirk (T-16th), Matthew Wolff (T-40th); with five of the seven recommendations making the cut. Behind the Paywall the stars were: Cameron Davis (3rd), Tony Finau (4th), Abraham Ancer (T-5th), Michael Thompson (T-5th), Brian Harman (T-8th), and Sungjae Im (T-12th).  I also recommended fading on Brooks Koepka (MC) and Lucas Glover (MC), both not making the cut.     

With this week having a stronger field, yet with many of the top 10 rated players still missing from the field, I feel it is important to select one of the top salary ranked competitors, such as Jon Rahm ($11,300 DK $12,100 FD), or Rory McIlroy ($11,100 DK $12,200 FD), combined with another three out of the top 50 ranked salary players such as, Tony Finau ($10,700 DK $11,300 FD), orHarris English ($9,800 DK $11,100FD), along with Gary Woodland ($7,800 DK $9,300 FD) or Jason Kokrak ($7,700 DK $9,800 FD) to yield a winning roster. The recommended roster picks above and below will be competitors I will be selecting in multiple rosters I will enter in a GPP play this week.

KSCoaches Core Picks:

  1. Rory McIlroy ($11,000 DK $12,200 FD)
  2. Harris English ($9,800 DK $11,100 FD)
  3. Gary Woodland ($7,800 DK $9,300 FD)
  4. xxx
  5. xxx
  6. Jamie Lovemark ($6,300 DK $7,000 FD)

All of the above picks are based on these players being strong in the most important aspects of their games on these courses, current form, and competitive history at this venue in that order. There are several quality picks that are very undervalued throughout the field, especially in the $6,700 through $8,00 DK and $7,800 through $9,400 FD salary range. This week with a 152-player field, but somewhat watered down, I will recommend choosing a top-half heavy roster with one of the top four player’s, each in separate lineups, with another three to four roster players between the 5 and 60 ranked salary players, and the final pick as a value to make the cut, have a top 20 finish as your sixth man from the bottom third of the salary ranked competitors. FantasyDFSExperts will add to the obvious statistical analysis, with deeper research and the eyeball test. These details and trends from the entire field are only possible to come from someone that is intimately familiar with competitive golf, that is willing to go beyond the numbers and reaches the depth and breadth of the competitor and person to be out in front of positive results. While these are a few teasers for this week, more in-depth analysis and justification for my recommended lineup plays, or don’t plays this week, are exclusively available for members of Beyond the obvious, pay attention to my free picks, combined with the more in-depth analysis exclusively for FantasyDFSExperts members and you could be cashing a three to six figure ticket. Join me on the members side and be enlightened. 

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The Line-Up Leader DFS Picks for the Farmers Insurance Open: 2021

I consider the Leader’s this week to be Jon Rahm ($11,300 DK $12,100 FD), Rory McIlroy ($11,000 DK $12,200 FD), Tony Finau ($10,700 DK $11,300 FD), Xander Schauffele ($10,400 DK $11,600 FD) Patrick Reed ($10,100 DK $10,900 FD), Harris English ($9,800 DK $11,100 FD) and Sungjae Im ($9,600 DK $10,700 FD). All of these competitors are consistently strong and leaders with putting and the ball striking stats relative to strokes gained, have been in recent good form, most have experience and successful history on this course with the prerequisite skills to win and finish in the top 10, with Rory McIlroy being the odds-on favorite to win. While Jon Rahm ($11,300 DK $12,100 FD), is a leader that needs to be respected as a contender to win or to have a high finish at any event, he may be a fade this week with coming off of a minor injury and not having competed for a couple weeks. Although, I do believe he will finish in the top 10 to 20 and he will be a good choice if you are selecting two leaders to head a roster with multiple entries, I wouldn’t hesitate to combine him with Tony Finau or Harris English in a single entry, then reaching down further in the salary rankings for your core picks.

The Core DFS Picks for the Farmers Insurance Open: 2021

These are the core recommendations to fill the two through five spots in a variety of salary ranges that I believe will shine this week to have a top 10 to 20th place finish, hopefully leading to a nice pay day for you. Scottie Scheffler ($9,000 DK $10,600 FD)Ryan Palmer ($8,400 DK $9,600 FD), Will Zalatoris ($8,1000 DK $9,900 FD), Gary Woodland ($7,800 DK $9,300 FD), Corey Conners ($7,700 DK $9,500 FD), Jason Kokrak ($7,700 DK $9,500 FD), Charles Howell III ($7,500 DK $9,100 FD), Carlos Ortiz ($7,500 DK $9,200 FD), Alex Noren ($7,400 DK $8,400 FD), Rory Sabbatini ($7,100 DK $8,700 FD), and Kevin Streelman ($6,900 DK $8,400 FD), all have consistent strokes gained off of the tee, with putting, in overall ball striking stats, have been in recent good form, and have experience and positive results at the Farmers Insurance Open or a similar course that demands the same skillset as the Torrey Pines courses. With a hot putter, all have the potential to have a top 10 finish or to even win this week. I think there are many good two to five roster selections within the $7,300 to $9,300 DK or $8,800 to $10,700 FD, but these are my favorites. A fade I see in this salary range is Rickie Fowler ($8,000 DK $9,500 FD), who has been rounding into better form, finishing T-21 last week, but has not been driving the ball well and has a history of not making the cut here. To be helpful in a GPP roster play this week and to justify his salary, Fowler will need to finish in the top 10 to 20, and I do not think that will happen.

The Dark Horse DFS Picks for the Farmers Insurance Open: 2021

There are several good values and dark horses that can have some success this week ranging in salary from $6,000 to $7,300 in DK and $7,000 to $8,700 in FD.  Excellent choices in this category are Kramer Hickok ($6,800 DK $8,000 FD)Patrick Rodgers ($6,800 DK $7,900 FD), Keith Mitchell ($6,700 DK $7,600 FD), Justin Suh ($6,600 DK $8,400 FD), Scott Stallings ($6,600 DK $7,800 FD), Jhonattan Vegas ($6,500 DK $7,700 FD), Roger Sloan ($6,400 DK $7,500 FD), and Jamie Lovemark ($6,300 DK $7,000 FD). All of the aforementioned have had success during the latter half of the 2020 or beginning of the 2021season, with the key stats to excel in this week, or admittedly an experienced hunch on my part. A fade in this Dark Horse category, are all competitors in the $6,000 DK and all but a few exceptions in the $7,000 FD salary range. 

The aforementioned picks are designed to be for a six-man GPP roster team play, with the goal being to have all six competitors to make the cut, and to have a top 10 to 20th place finish. If you benefit from these opinions and recommendations, please send us any fodder for the “Wall of Fame” including screenshots. We will put them up on social and proclaim you the DFS champion of the world. Good luck, and Golf On!   

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