2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade

by Tyler Marling
2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade

Welcome to the 2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade article.

It’s finally time to drive through the magnolias for the greatest golf tournament in the world.

The first major of the season is upon us and rumors of the Tiger Woods teeing up are turning from smoke to fire after he released a statement on Twitter saying he’d be a game-time decision and followed it up with a practice round on Sunday.

To get it out of the way, Tiger Woods will not be a part of my2022 Masters: favorites to fade, nor will we be betting him at all despite sitting at +5000 according to DraftKings currently. It’s just hard to imagine Woods having a successful week after a 15-month layoff and his first tournament back from a catastrophic crush injury being at one of the toughest tournaments in golf. However, Woods potentially playing in this event adds to the hype.

Typically, at the Masters, the leaderboard is chock-full of favorites with some outliers here and there. I expect that to again be the case, especially in a field of only 90 players. However, I have picked out a few guys, who would be considered favorites, that I think should be a part of my 2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade.

2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade

Jon Rahm (+900)

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Jon Rahm is the outright favorite this week according to DraftKings. Rahm has had fantastic showings at Augusta National throughout his career but hasn’t quite slipped on the tailored green jacket.

He made his debut in 2017 and has been one of the most consistent players in the event since then. Rahm has finished in the top 10 in each of the last four Masters and has a high finish of fourth in 2018.

However, putting is enormous at Augusta as the green complexes are some of the most difficult on the PGA Tour. For whatever reason, Rahm has really struggled with his putter this season despite being a good putter throughout his career. The Spaniard ranks 136th on tour in strokes gained: putting at -.115 per round.

In fact, his short game as a whole has been very poor. He shows even worse in strokes gained: around-the-green at 170th at -.257 per round.

Despite Rahm’s ball-striking, I have to fade him this week due to how poor his short game has been this season.

Scottie Scheffler (+1200)

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I know, this seems idiotic. Fading the hottest player on the planet and new official world golf ranking’s number one player in the world is risky business. Scottie Scheffler, however, has only played in two Masters. He has solid showings in each one, finishing T18th last season and T19th in 2020.

Scheffler has been white-hot but I just don’t feel like he is quite ready to win at Augusta National. Don’t get me wrong, he’s going to win here eventually, he has too much talent not to, I just don’t think it’s this year.

With the season Scheffler has had thus far, a win this week would surely lock up PGA Tour Player of the Year already. He has three wins in his last five events and a T7th also in that stretch. He has had a phenomenal year.

His short game has also been very good this season. He is currently 15th in strokes gained: putting at .588 per round and 33rd in strokes gained: around the green at .308 per round.

The numbers and form show that Scheffler probably isn’t a guy to fade this week, I just don’t think he’s quite ready to win at Augusta.

Rory McIlroy (+2000)

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The debate can begin on whether Rory McIlroy is a betting favorite this week or not. His odds, +2000 per DraftKings, don’t necessarily scream favorite. However, he is tied for the 7th shortest odds out of 90 golfers and the name recognition will make McIlroy a popular bet.

I absolutely love his game. His swing is picture perfect and he really moves the golf ball out there. It’s fun to watch.

However, McIlroy has insane pressure on him, again, at Augusta as he will be once again trying to complete the career grand slam. Only five golfers have completed the grand slam, Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, and of course, Tiger Woods.

McIlroy has the talent to pull the feat off, yet he has been unsuccessful many times in trying to complete it. He also hasn’t performed consistently at Augusta National.

His best finish, in 13 tries, is fourth in 2015. He has missed the cut only twice, including last year, and only has three total top-five finishes in those 13 tries.

He has also only played in four tournaments since the turn of the calendar to 2022 and doesn’t even qualify for statistical ranking. McIlroy missed the cut last week at the Valero Texas Open, a tournament in which I thought he had a chance to win.

McIlroy is my most confident of my 2022 Masters Tournament: Favorites to Fade.

Make sure you read Mark’s 2022 Masters Tournament: Prop Bets Picks!

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