Well, week one of our 2022 PGA DFS picks we’re a success. The hope is that the 2022 PGA DFS: Sony Open FanDuel DFS Golf Picks are even more successful.
Not only did I have the tournament winner of the event in my lineup, for the Sentry Tournament of Champions, my confidence in that pick was also at an all-time high. Here’s the last little snippet on Cam Smith from last week:
Mullett mania ran wild last year with Smith and this is my most confident play of the six guys I’m playing. He would also be someone I would strongly consider betting to win this week.
The good news is, in the tournament I entered, I cashed. The bad news? Jason Kokrak cost us a big win. Either way, cashing in DFS is always a good thing.
The Sony Open will be held at Wai’alae Country Club on Oahu and plays to a Par 70 and measures just 7,044 yards; short for tour pros these days. You won’t need bombers to win this week, finding fairways and hitting greens will have guys in contention.
2022 PGA DFS: Sony Open FanDuel DFS Golf Picks
Mark Hubbard – $8,100
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I don’t always include an extremely cheap option but I’m making an exception this week. This is absolutely a risky pick being that Mark Hubbard likely has a ceiling of about 15th and could easily finish near the bottom of the field, and he hasn’t teed it up in a tournament since October.
Hubbard did tee it up 32 times in the 2021 season and made a fantastic 28 cuts. However, his best finish was at the Travelers Championship where he finished 13th. This is such a high-risk play, but one that could net you a nice profit if he simply makes the cut.
Last season, Hubbard finished 195th out of 200 golfers in driving distance, and 170th in strokes gained off the tee. He finished 128th in greens in regulation percentage and was 118th in strokes gained on approach shots. He was actually solid with the flat stick, finishing 51st in strokes gained with the putter.
None of those numbers should jump out of you. So, you may be wondering, why pick him? In DFS, a lot of the success is centered around value. Hubbard is someone who can make birdies, which means he has a solid chance to make the cut. At $8,100, it’s worth the risk. He also finished 32nd in this event last season, which would be a success this week.
Charles Howell III – $9,400
We’re already seeing the benefit of picking a low-tiered salary guy in Hubbard. My second cheapest pick this week comes in at $9,400 in Charles Howell III. Chucky three-sticks is a guy who has been around the tour for a long time and has had quite a bit of success including three wins and 97 top 10’s.
One look at Howell’s PGA Tour player profile shows that he is as solid as it gets on tour. His only weakness is in his approach game, which ranked 177th last season. If Howell is locked in with his irons, he’s an easy selection for a top 20 finish, which may be a solid prop bet this week.
Howell has also played well here in each of the last two seasons. He finished T19th in 2021 and T12th in 2020.
Brendan Steele – $9,600
This pick is based heavily on past performances at this event. In 2020 Brendan Steele lost this even to Cameron Smith in a playoff. Last season, he finished T4th.
However, this pick is not based solely on past performances. Steele is a very solid PGA tour player, and like Howell III, he’s been around a long time and had a lot of success. For his career, he’s entered 271 events, made 188 cuts, and has 3 career wins to go along with 32 top 10s.
Statistically, Steele is just middle of the pack across the board. In the strokes gained area, his lowest ranking from last season is putting, where he checks in at 134th. Meanwhile, his best ranking is off the tee, where he checks in at 75th.
Steele is another guy I like to finish top 20 this week.
Billy Horschel – $10,200
Noticing a theme yet? This week, I’m relying on experience considering this is the first full-field tournament of 2022. After a long layoff, experience is a must. Billy Horschel is another guy with nearly 300 career starts on the PGA Tour. He’s played in 280 events and made 205 cuts, fantastic numbers.
Horschel has six career wins with 49 top 10s. He had a fantastic season last season. He finished 9th in the FedEx Cup and had six top 10s.
Like Steele and Howell, Horschel is very solid in most aspects of the game. The once concerning piece is the fact that he ranked 146th in strokes gained on approach shots and 141st in strokes gained around the green. That’s a bad combination to have. Iron play will be important for Horschel this week.
Horschel didn’t play in this even in 2020 but finished T7th last season.
Corey Conners – $11,000
Corey Conners is a pick where skillset matching course setup trumps experience. Conners has only 120 starts to his name and the 2020-21 season was the best of his young career. He finished 18th in total shots gained per round on the field last season. Specifically for this week, strokes gained on approach shots (9th), and tee-to-green (12th) are the main reasons I’m taking the young Canadian.
Conners had a slow start to his career but last season took a jump. He recorded 8 of his career 14 top 10s last season. He also had the 19th best scoring average on tour at 70.067. Conners has a chance to jump into the 12 to 15 players on tour this season if he can grab a couple of wins.
I like Conners as a trendy top 10 finisher at Wai’alae this week. He didn’t play in the event last season but finished T12th in 2020.
Hideki Matsuyama – $11,600
Last year’s Masters’ winner Hideki Matsuyama, despite that win, actually had a bit of a down year for his standards. Matsuyama finished just 26th in the FedEx Cup rankings and had only 3 top 10 finishes and just the one (albeit a big one) win.
Three top 10s in a season would be a very successful season for most guys. However, Matsuyama is not most guys. Matsuyama has played in 202 career events and made a phenomenal 172 cuts. He has seven career wins and 51 tops 10s. He has made the top 10 in over 25 percent of the tournaments he’s played in, just an incredible career mark.
I think he starts 2022 off with a bang. The question mark with Matsuyama is and always will be his putter. His worst ranking by far in the shots gained category is putting, where he ranks 175th. His next worst ranking is off the tee where he ranks 50th. If the putter is hot, Matsuyama can win going away this week.
Last season he finished T19th here and was T12th in 2020.
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