PGA DFS Charles Schwab Challenge Preview

If you need PGA DFS to help you manage withdrawal, you’re in luck! As always, my goal each week is to offer targets in each price range, identifying two to three low-cost/reasonable floor targets as core pieces for all my lineups.

In DFS golf, it’s all about getting your guys to the weekend, first and foremost. Generally, I will fill out my roster with guys in the $7,100-$9,000 range. The factors I consider are event history, course layout versus player strengths, recent form, and prime bounce back candidates who are playing well, but happened to miss the cut the prior week.

One factor does not necessarily outweigh another. And, like any good speculative decision-making process, instincts always play a role. Of course there’s my personal favorite factor–as is the same with other fringe DFS sports–the DK pricing model has no clue what the fuck it is doing!

All that in mind, let’s take a look at the Charles Schwab Challenge (CSC) information to clarify some unique characteristics that you may want to consider before lineups lock.

Event Information

Course: Colonial Country Club  Fort Worth, TX  Par 70  Yardage 7,200

Corporate sponsors may change, but the scenery does not. Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas has been an annual tour stop since its inaugural event in 1946.

Now, with this year’s schedule change going into effect, it becomes the season’s second major championship hangover for the foreseeable future. This week it draws five of the top 10 ranked players in the world, including defending champ, Justin Rose.

His winning score of 20 under par was one shot off the tournament record, set by Zach Johnson in 2010. Over the last 10 years, the winning score has averaged right around 15 under, so making birdies will be a must to contend.

Here are the past five winners and their scores:

Year Player TO PAR
2018 Justin Rose -20
2017 Kevin Kisner -10
2016 Jordan Spieth -17
2015 Chris Kirk -12
2014 Adam Scott -9

 

Keys to Success

My top two stats to weigh this week in order are:

  1. Driving Accuracy (DA)
  2. Greens/Fringes hit in regulation (GIR/FIR)

The first imperative to even attempting makeable birdies will be hitting fairways. Colonial is littered with oak and walnut trees all over the place.

Players with one too many errant tee shots will shoot themselves out of weekend play. And, out of your beautifully crafted DFS lineups.

No one needs that, so an emphasis on accuracy off the tee should be targeted this week. After hitting fairways, you guessed it, hitting greens will be very key to setting up convertible birdie attempts…

In general, accuracy > power is the theme for the week. To help sift through the field regarding just the key stats I put the table below together using all data from the official PGA Tour website. It is listed in order of each players’ composite ranking, an average of each players’ ranking in the two key stats for this week. Sort as you wish:

NameSalaryDADA PercentageGIR/FIRGIR/FIR PercentageComposite Rank
Paul Casey93001369.831073.8911.5
Scott Piercy86001769.282072.618.5
Corey Conners72004466.32377.123.5
Nate Lashley64002867.591972.8923.5
Kevin Streelman69002468.473072.127
Jim Furyk7300175.355969.9230
Brendan Steele65004066.722672.2233
Ian Poulter91003267.353771.5834.5
Kramer Hickok70001469.85670.1235
Chez Reavie8300274.178269.342
Kevin Kisner92002967.475869.9743.5
Andrew Landry66001070.397869.3744
Russell Knox74006465.042572.3244.5
Josh Teater63006564.992672.2245.5
Bryson DeChambeau94003766.935470.1445.5
Emiliano Grillo87003966.85370.1546
Sungjae Im77006165.283571.8448
Joel Dahmen82002068.788169.3350.5
Matthew Fitzpatrick85004266.516169.8451.5
Abraham Ancer76002268.758669.2454
Carlos Ortiz61008563.092672.2255.5
Brian Stuard71001170.0310168.6856
Kyoung-Hoon Lee69004166.597169.5956
Jon Rahm112009562.412272.458.5
Jason Kokrak89009162.68317261
Michael Thompson68001869.0110768.3162.5
Brice Garnett6100970.5211867.8563.5
Roberto Castro66005665.477369.4464.5
Ryan Palmer840011561.141573.1265
Francesco Molinari98004566.279968.6972
Matt Every72006065.298469.2872
Vaughn Taylor67002568.4512267.7873.5
Ryan Armour6100472.3715266.5378
Rickie Fowler1050011461.164570.6679.5
Shawn Stefani6800119614071.4379.5
Ben Silverman61001569.7314466.8379.5
Rory Sabbatini88007463.828769.280.5
Xander Schauffele1000014659.411672.9981
Matt Jones740010062.176269.881
Adam Long63008163.148269.381.5
J.J. Henry60005565.5511567.9985
Adam Schenk650013060.274670.4488
Scott Brown66007363.8610968.1391
Brian Gay6400372.3818765.2895
Talor Gooch670018056.51173.5495.5
Daniel Berger76003467.1415866.3396
Tyrrell Hatton78009462.459968.6996.5
Tom Hoge620010561.659069.0597.5
Jhonattan Vegas730016957.693271.95100.5
Graeme McDowell78004965.7915466.49101.5
Jason Dufner74009862.3110868.28103
Denny McCarthy66007264.2313567.31103.5
Jonas Blixt65008063.1613167.42105.5
Kiradech Aphibarnrat75008762.8612567.7106
Austin Cook69002368.5418964.67106
Bronson Burgoon64006964.514566.67107
Dominic Bozzelli650011261.2310368.44107.5
Kevin Na80007563.6514166.86108
Bud Cauley72008862.8413067.53109
Martin Laird700012360.89668.83109.5
Cameron Champ670019754.622472.35110.5
C.T. Pan73005665.4716666.08111
Nick Watney660014359.78969.09116
Ryan Blaum63009262.5914067.1116
Billy Horschel810010362.0113167.42117
Ben Crane65005265.7318265.5117
Joaquin Niemann710014559.449269.03118.5
Louis Oosthuizen90003567.1220262.22118.5
Kevin Tway750018255.985670.12119
Scott Langley61003367.3120561.9119
Byeong Hun An750016058.318069.35120
Roger Sloan63009362.5814966.62121
Zach Johnson79006664.8717865.71122
Trey Mullinax720020551.834171.39123
Whee Kim600011361.1913467.33123.5
Tony Finau960017556.947869.37126.5
J.T. Poston710013560.0912467.72129.5
Justin Rose1140017057.389069.05130
Brian Harman69005865.4120462.01131
Hudson Swafford610016657.979768.73131.5
Brandt Snedeker79009062.7417365.83131.5
Ted Potter, Jr.62008263.118165.56131.5
Bill Haas710014759.3811967.84133
Pat Perez77007663.5919164.35133.5
Patton Kizzire670013660.0313767.17136.5
Rod Pampling62007863.3720062.7139
Branden Grace750016158.312067.82140.5
Si Woo Kim770015059.2113767.17143.5
Nick Taylor680015558.813667.3145.5
Beau Hossler670012560.6916866.05146.5
Richy Werenski610012260.8817265.96147
Chesson Hadley62001386016266.2150
Danny Lee730018855.5911468.02151
Charley Hoffman760016258.1714166.86151.5
Max Homa690019554.7111667.92155.5
Andrew Putnam680015259.1316166.27156.5
Scott Stallings680019155.4312367.75157
Martin Kaymer700013160.2419264.32161.5
Sam Burns710017656.9315066.55163
Jordan Spieth1090020451.9413167.42167.5
Aaron Baddeley700015358.918565.37169
Seamus Power720015658.7419862.78177
Anirban Lahiri650014959.2520661.63177.5
Chris Stroud630017157.2819064.38180.5
Mackenzie Hughes620018156.1818065.59180.5
Jimmy Walker740019654.6616666.08181
Wyndham Clark640020153.9916966.02185
Peter Malnati630019954.4218864.77193.5
Ollie Schniederjans700021147.4917665.76193.5
Peter Uihlein660020651.4918365.49194.5
Michael Kim620019355.3119962.72196
Doug Ghim670000000
David Toms660000000
Boo Weekley640000000
Kenny Perry640000000
Colt Knost620000000
Keith Clearwater610000000
Tom Purtzer600000000
Tyrone Van Aswegen600000000
Tucker Wadkins600000000
Mike Weir600000000
Tim Herron600000000
Dru Love600000000

*player without data have not played in enough PGA events for stats to qualify

Price Range Targets

Chalky McChalkerson (Five figures to 9.1k–11 players)

For DFS purposes, I much prefer Paul Casey or Ian Poulter to the high-priced big dogs, Rose and Jon Rahm. Their games are better statistical fits right now for Colonial, and those high price tags will not return much value to your lineup without a minimum top 10 finish.

Two of the top head cases on tour, Jordan Spieth and Bryson DeChambeau, arrive at the CSC in precarious positions. Spieth looked to have found his game a bit, with a T-3 finish at last week’s PGA Championship, his first finish inside the top-20 this season. He could be wildly popular in DFS from this range.

On the other hand, resident tour physics professor DeChambeau, missed his second consecutive cut. It’s only a matter of time before his equations start working again, resulting in everyone discussing his revolutionary approach to golf. He has the upside to win.

Sweet Spot (9k to 7.1k–43 players)

On the high end, Scott Piercy and Emiliano Grillo have both been playing well, and are solid statistical fits for this course. Grillo, an Argentina native, will be looking to build on the momentum at Colonial where he finished an event career best, sole third last year. Also, as the tweet below indicates, he will be looking to overcome the typical, 2019 American police brutality that victimized him at last week’s PGA Championship in New York.

I can’t speak for everyone, but I for one. AM. OUTRAGED! I may even sign a petition, demanding a time machine be invented so Grillo can improve his experience, and we can give Tiger another chance to make the cut.

Seriously though, if you signed that petition, you’re a giant loser. Now that I have that off my chest, Chez Reavie and Jim Furyk are my favorite mid/low-priced targets in this range, for the same reasons as Piercy and Grillo.

Sneaky Low % Owned (7k and below–about ~70 players)

In my Byron Nelson preview, I profiled similar key stats as targets for that course. Nate Lashley’s name popped out as a great fit, and it worked nicely with a T-29 finish. A thinner field should help his chances of cashing his ninth check in 12 starts this season.

Talor Gooch can be wild off the tee, but has been an elite approach shot guy in his second full season on tour. His four made cuts in nine starts this season have all been top-25 finishes, with two inside the top-5, so when he gets to Saturday, he usually plays a factor.

His mental state will likely depend on whether or not the petition he signed gets approved…

Another interesting play from this range is Doug Ghim. Having turned pro last year, he is spending most of his time on the Web.com tour.

He ranks in the top 50 in key metrics on that tour, hitting 67 and 71 percent of fairways and greens in regulation, respectively. On the big tour this year, he’s managed three weekends in five starts, including a career best, T-12 at the Byron Nelson two weeks ago.

Best Bounce Back Candidates
  • Ryan Palmer–MC at last week’s PGA in what has been a solid 2019.
  • Bryson DeChambeau–See above.
  • Brendan Grace–MC at the PGA. Does not miss many weekends in a single season. Hasn’t missed back to back cuts on the PGA Tour since August of 2017.
  • Russell Knox–Also MC last week. Has the right game for Colonial, as his three top-25s in his three career appearances suggest.

Ryan Palmer (Source: Patrick Smith/Getty Images North America)

Best Course History Plays
  • Ryan Palmer–Both categories! Did you know that Palmer has made 11 weekends in 15 career appearances at Colonial? And, he has never missed the cut in consecutive starts here. AND, he missed it last year? You do now! Roster accordingly.
  • Zach Johnson–Similar to Palmer, Johnson was an MC here last year. Before that, ZJ made 12 straight weekends at Colonial, including five top-10s, with two wins.
  • Bill Haas–Last season’s T-14 here made it seven weekends in a row for Haas, and eight of nine in cuts made overall.

Core Players

Last season, I started including my core players to build around in all my lineups. I try to identify targets before prices are released to stay focused, and avoid editing my lineup 2,000 times ten minutes before lock.

These selections are players that I believe have top-25 floors with top 10 upside, and a reasonable case to win. More detailed results are to come as the season moves along. This week’s selections:

  1. Grillo
  2. Furyk
  3. Casey
  4. ZJ

Good luck in Fort Worth! Don’t hesitate to reach out on twitter compliments and insults are always welcome. Also follow my new podcast!

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