Golf Betting Tips and Picks
The PGA Tour makes its way from Phoenix, Arizona, to the Los Angeles, California, area for The Genesis Invitational, an event that goes way back to 1926. We again have 132 players in the field this week, and the top 65 scoring players plus ties after round 2 on Friday will get to play round 3 on Saturday and round 4 on Sunday.
There’s again a whopping $20M to be won this week, the winner banks a crazy $3.6M and also collects 550 FedEx Cup points. Riviera Country Club is a par 71, stretches out to 7,322 yards, and the large greens are poa annua. The average winning score at this tournament over the last ten years is -13.2, so expect the golfer who’s victorious to end up in the teens this week – challenging course. The 1985 -20 tournament record is held by Lanny Wadkins. Place bets on golfers this week who are long from the tee blocks, solid around greens, strong off the tee, sound on approach, and those who putt well on poa annua surfaces.
Three questions that are relevant to the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am this week:
- Driving distance has proved to be the most important stat here over the last number of years, so which 10 players have been the best in this stat category over their last 24 rounds? Rory McIlroy (349.6 yards!), Tiger Woods, Shane Lowry, Wyndham Clark, Cameron Young, Gary Woodland, Cameron Champ, Will Zalatoris, Jon Rahm, and Davis Thompson.
- Which 10 players gained the most strokes total (minimum 8 rounds) at this event since 2018? Viktor Hovland, Max Homa, Adam Scott, Tony Finau, Jon Rahm, Xander Schauffele, Patrick Cantlay, Collin Morikawa, Rory McIlroy, and Justin Thomas.
- What’s my top bet for the week? Between a combination of high win probability and payout – it’s a tough call this week, but I do like Max Homa to finish top 20 at +100 on DK, and a close 2nd is Rory McIlroy to finish top 10 at +110.
Below you will find players that I will bet, might bet, and five random bets that interest me. The odds come from DraftKings Sportsbook and are outright numbers. My betting strategy is to hedge quite a bit so my upside isn’t huge but neither is my downside, and I’m profitable or break even in roughly 70% of the weeks I’m active.
5 Players That I’m Absolutely Betting
Rory McIlroy (+900) – If his putting wasn’t so awful last week then he would have likely finished inside the top 10 for his fourth straight PGA Tour event. He has three wins in his last thirteen starts, other top 10’s, plus he has three top 10’s here since 2019. I bet him hard last week and he screwed me unfortunately, but I’m back on the Rory express again this week to win and finish top 10.
Jon Rahm (+750) – He has two wins over his last nine starts and another six more of those have gone for top 8’s – let’s be honest, he’s unreal! He has finished inside the top 21 here in four career starts and two of those have gone for top 9’s including his T5 in 2021. He has gained almost 17 strokes ball striking here over the last two editions, and nobody will be surprised if he wins the big $3.6M prize this week. I’m betting him the same way I’m betting McIlroy above, and may also throw in a top 5 for good measure.
Scottie Scheffler (+1000) – He defended his title at the Phoenix Open last week on the back of gaining a ridiculous 12.22 strokes ball striking and 4.16 with his putter. He consistently finishes inside the top 10 and has six straight top 11’s including a win, a 2nd, and a T3. He’s the top-ranked golfer in the world again and he won’t want to let that go anytime soon. He had a T7 here last year and should be in the mix to win come Sunday – I’m betting him to win and finish top 10 this week.
Wyndham Clark (+8000) – Clark has two top 10’s in his last four starts and five top 29’s over his last 7 starts. His excellent distance will serve him well this week along with his deft touch around greens, and he could potentially repeat his performance from two years ago when he took home a T8. I’m all over his top 20 and top 40 this week and will consider a top 10 wager also, but I can’t commit to that just yet.
Max Homa (+2000) – Show me a great California player and I’ll point to Homa who’s typically outstanding in his home state. He won here two years ago and has three straight top 10’s at this venue. He recently won just two starts ago, has two top 3’s over his last three appearances, and will be hungry to win this week on a course that he’s very familiar with. I will be betting him to finish top 10 and top 20 for sure, and will likely spring for the outright wager, as well.
5 Players That I Might Bet
Viktor Hovland (+2800) – Hovland has been superb at this tournament with a T4 here last year and a T5 in 2021 – not bad for just two starts at Riviera. He won four starts ago, had a T13 two starts ago, and should do well this week if his short game shows up. I’m almost certain I’ll bet him to finish top 10 and top 20 – especially the latter given generous +125 odds.
Justin Thomas (+1600) – I expect last week to be a springboard for Thomas as he was great in Phoenix gaining 8.81 strokes ball striking and 3.26 around the green to finish solo 4th. He has three top 9’s here since 2018 including a runner-up in 2019, and I think he will do something similar this week also. I’m probable to bet JT to finish top 10, may get to his top 5 number, and could bet him outright.
Tony Finau (+1600) – He has come close to winning this event twice with a runner-up two years ago and a T2 five years ago. He has four top 9’s over his last six starts including winning the Houston Open, and is coming off a T14 last week despite losing 1.92 strokes on the greens. I’m considering betting him to win this week, top 5, and top 10, but will likely wait until Wednesday evening before deciding what to do with Finau.
Matt Fitzpatrick (+4000) – Fitzpatrick had a strong finish last week in Arizona finishing T29 with a round 4 strokes gained stat line of 1.48 OTT, -0.63 APP, 2.50 ARG, 1.48 PUTT, 3.35 T2G, and 4.83 TOT. I think his body is starting to feel better and he should be competitive this week since he’s solid off the tee and with his short game. He had a top 5 here two years ago gaining strokes across the board – typical of his play. I like his +170 odds to finish top 20 this week and might venture into top 10 territory with him but everything is up in the air at this point in time.
Sam Burns (+3500) – He’s starting to heat up again with a T11 at The American Express two starts ago and he’s coming off a T6 last week with solid play throughout his bag. He finished 3rd here two years ago thanks to brilliant approach play and putting gaining more than 13 strokes combined. I will likely end up betting Burns to finish top 20 this week and could explore his top 10 number, as well.
5 Other Interesting Bets
Winning Margin – Playoff (+300), Win by 1 (+225), or Win by 2 (+350) – The winning score here has been either by a stroke, two strokes, or won in a playoff over the last five years, and since 1998 the winner has been one of these except in 2017 Dustin Johnson won by 5 strokes. I’ll be betting all three of these outcomes equally as a solid-looking hedge bet.
Tournament Matchup – Keegan Bradley vs Wyndham Clark (-110) – Both players have done fairly well lately but Clark has two top 17’s here over the last three years and Bradley’s best is a T34 since 2016 – I’m going with the bomber in Wyndham.
To Make the Parlay – Thomas, Burns, Zalatoris, and Clark (+160) – I fully expect all of these four golfers to be playing weekend golf, so I’m all over this relatively safe bet.
To Miss the Cut – Tiger Woods (-210) – With Tiger playing this week I wanted to mention a bet with his name in it and unfortunately for him, I think he misses the cut this week. At least he’ll have lots of energy with the weekend off to present the trophy on Sunday evening.
Nationality Props – Great Britain and Ireland – Rory McIlroy (+120) – There are a few solid golfers up against Rory here including Fitzpatrick, Hatton, Power, and others, but none are even close to being in the same category as McIlroy.
Be sure to do lots of research and due diligence on each player before parting with your hard-earned money, and all the best in having a profitable week!
Jeremy has been playing fantasy sports for over 20 successful years, and actively plays golf, hockey, baseball, and table tennis. He has over three years of fantasy sports writing experience – including writing a daily fantasy sports strategies and tools eBook in 2016. He is an active member of DraftKings – specializing in NHL and PGA contests over the past 5 years. He enjoys spending time with his family, traveling to hot places in the frigid Canadian Winters, binge-watching on Netflix, and starting and managing digital businesses.