DANE’S DARTS: ROCKET MORTGAGE CLASSIC
This week the PGA Tour heads back to Detroit Golf Club for the 2nd Rocket Mortgage Classic. We don’t have as strong of a field as we have in recent weeks, but it is still a step up from this event last year. In 2019, we saw a complete birdie fest with Nate Lashley winning at -25 for the week. I think we will see something similar this year, especially with the strength of the field.
As always, be sure to check out the RotoPros LIVE golf show that Chris and I record each week on Wednesday nights. You can find the show on YouTube via the RotoPros channel. There we discuss the course and a general overview of our strategy for the week. If you subscribe to the RotoPros channel on YouTube you will be notified each time we go live!
My goal for this article is to break down each price range from a strategy/lineup construction standpoint. Once I do that, I will list a couple of my favorite plays in the range. I really want to help you by talking through how we can gain an edge through construction and not necessarily just taking 3-4 < 5% owned players. That is one way I have really improved in DFS golf, understanding that you only must be different to a point. I usually focus on lower entry max GPPs (single entry, 3 maxes, and 5 maxes) but will speak to certain plays that are better in larger fields and cash games.
I build my models and do a lot of my early week research over at Fantasy National. If you haven’t checked them out, I would highly recommend giving them a shot. It is really a great place to build your own custom models based on the things that you think are important for the week. If you have a certain inclination that one stat will be more important than another you are able to weigh it higher and build out your own model in that way. You can check out their site at www.fantasynational.com.
COURSE & KEY STATS
Detroit Golf Club is a Donald Ross design that really rewards good approach play. It is a par 72 with 4 par 5s which only enhances golfers ability to go low. Like I mentioned above, I expect us to see another birdie fest so I am targeting guys who have their game rounding into form and who can go low.
You will see in my key stats below that I am giving a bit of weight to stats like putting since guys will need to make a lot of putts this week if they plan on competing come Sunday afternoon.
Here is a look at my complete list of key stats for the week:
- SG: Approach
- SG: T2G
- Birdies Gained
- SG: Par 5
- SG: ARG
- SG: Putting
I’ll keep it short and sweet this week. Weather does not look to be a factor for guys this week with less than 10 mph winds most all week. Prime conditions for a birdie fest.
We have a bit of a weaker field this week and you can tell it by just looking at pricing. Some of the guys, like Doc Redman are priced up quite a bit from what we usually see. This doesn’t mean they are bad plays. We have to not let our perceptions get us off plays just because of price.
There are actually some value pieces I like so I can see stars and scrubs being viable this week, but also balanced builds have validity. A week like this usually provides more of an opportunity to lower level golfers stealing it on Sunday evening. This is a type of course they are used to seeing on other tours coming up such as the Korn Ferry.
$9K + RANGE
The elephant (or or whatever he looks like these days) in the room is the top priced player, Bryson DeChambeau. The question of the week will probably be what do you do with him. There are a few options in this range I like but I feel that if I am going to go all the way to the top I’m going with Bryson with the form he’s in right now.
- Bryson DeChambeau ($11,700) – Yes, he is very expensive, but I think you can make it work with some of the value guys this week. At this price he has to win to pay off this tag. Certainly he can do that as a +650 favorite. The only thing giving me hesitation is my thought that to win he will have to make a lot of putts this week and when we have an iron/putting fest sometimes we see someone get super hot and take it down. He’s my favorite play up here, but I haven’t completely decided if I will get up to him this week.
- Kevin Na ($9,100) – Na is 7th in my overall model this week and has had a nice overall game this year. He can make putts with the best of them which can help him take it deep a couple days throughout the week. He has had nice success at other Donald Ross courses such as Sedgefield CC, home of the Wyndham Championship.
Notables: Viktor Hovland
There are some very interesting options in this range. You can fit multiple in a lineup if you go balanced or probably 1 if you go stars and scrubs.
- Doc Redman ($8,500) – This is an unheard of price of Doc, but I really like the way he has been playing as of late. He has averaged 5.9 strokes gained on approach per week since the Tour restart and now he returns to the place where he gained special temporary membership last year. I’m definitely willing to go back to him this week. I will be interested to see ownership this week. Will people really be willing to pay this price for him?
- Christiaan Bezuidenhout ($8,300) – He ranks 8th for me this week and has been very solid this year. It has been his overall game that has propelled him and if he can put it all together again this week I expect him to return some value for us.
Notables: Erik Van Rooyen
There are a lot of plays here this week and I really like the top half of the range. As always these guys can fit any type of build you decide to go with.
- Harold Varner III ($7,600) – I expect him to be popular this week but I will be all over him at this price in a field like this. Number 9 in my model, HV3 has been on fire. Last week he gained over 7 strokes on approach and I could definitely see him getting near the top of the leaderboard by the end of the week.
- Brandt Snedeker ($7,900) – This is more of a course fit play for me this week. He’s not going to pop on models but birdie fests on Donald Ross courses have treated him well in the past. He ranks 4th in this field in history on Ross courses and that’s over a sample of 64 rounds. If the putter is hot this week we can go low with the best of them.
- Alex Noren ($7,800) – I have missed playing Noren over the last year or 2. He was really good to me back when he was near the top of his game a few years back. Sometimes I think of him as a grinder, but similar to Sneds if he gets the putter going he can take it deep. Coming off the heels of a 21st at the Heritage, I think this place should suit Norens game and maybe we see him compete this week.
Notables: Tyler Duncan, Brian Stuard, Sebastian Munoz
There are some nice plays down here that will help get to guys like Bryson. As always, do not go all in on the guys down here if you have multiple lineups. Mix and match.
- Lanto Griffin ($6,600) – Lanto was a guy we rode early in the year as he kept producing a lot of good finishes. Coming out of the break he was a bit rusty to say the least losing 6 strokes on approach at Colonial in just 2 rounds. He has slowly improved over the last couple weeks finishing 24th last week in Cromwell. For the price he is a nice value this week.
- Wesley Bryan (6,400) – The last couple weeks from Bryan have been pretty impressive. This is not someone I ever really played even back when he was playing well in 2017. Last week he gained 9.3 strokes on approach… he has tended to have some of these outlier performances over the years. If he can even have back that up he will do well for us at $6,400.
Notables: Josh Teater, Bronson Burgoon
I wish all of you the best of luck and hope to see you in the Slack chat this week and on our live show Wednesday night! Remember to always trust your gut and play the plays that your research leads you to!