Perry’s Byron Nelson Betting Guide: Expect Longshots to Thrive in Wide-Open Field
Reinhold Matay, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Rafa Cabrera-Bello
- The AT&T Byron Nelson will take place this weekend at Trinity Forest Golf Club in Dallas, Texas.
- Brooks Koepka is the betting favorite to win the Byron Nelson, but with the PGA Championship looming it's hard to back any of the big names.
- That being the case, betting on longshots is the best strategy for the AT&T Byron Nelson.
Another longshot came through at Quail Hollow, it just wasn’t one of our longshots.
Max Homa cruised on Sunday to cash at 300-1, making it three triple-digit winners in seven years at the Wells Fargo.
But we were able to grind out a result thanks to top 10s from Keith Mitchell and Jhonattan Vegas.
Now we’ll move on to the Byron Nelson, where we have a relatively new course and pretty weak field with the PGA Championship looming next week.
Trinity Forest Golf Club will host the event for the second time. Last season, it played nearly 7,400 yards for a par 71 and really didn’t give the pros much trouble.
Aaron Wise broke through with his first PGA Tour win, finishing at 23-under par.
The course is pretty wide open with basically no tree or rough, allowing players to fire away off the tee. If the wind is down like it was last year, then there nothing will keep the winner from breaking 20-under par again.
As mentioned, this is far from the strongest field. Brooks Koepka is the favorite by a decent margin at +650. With a major on deck, we know where Koepka’s priority will lie, so it’s tough to expect too much from him this week.
The only other players under +2000 are Hideki Matsuyama and Jordan Spieth. Neither has really been firing on all cylinders yet this season. So this week appears to be pretty wide open, which will lead me toward the longshots again.
I won’t be backing anyone in this range. It’s a weak group at the top — and the stars who did show up will obviously have their sights set on Bethpage Black next week.
If you’re looking for a play in this range for your other pools, Henrik Stenson (+2200) is of some interest. Same with Matsuyama (+1600). But in the end, I won’t be betting these numbers at this kind of event.
This is where the winner Wise came from last year and this where I’ll be starting my card. Anticipating that the score will go pretty low this week, I’ll be targeting a few players who have won in the past when a bunch of birdies were required.
The first name that popped up for me was Pat Perez at +6600. Perez quickly returned to form following a couple months off with an Achilles injury, as he finished eighth at Quail Hollow last week. This course could play really easy again, and Perez’s three wins have all come in birdie-fests, with 21-under par being his worst score in a win.
Next up are a couple guys at +5000. Ryan Moore finished third a few weeks ago in San Antonio at the Valero Texas Open. Similar to Perez, he’s also played well in shootouts, with two of his five wins coming at better than 20-under par.
I like Rafa Cabrera-Bello at the same number. RCB has been consistent all year, making seven of eight cuts on the PGA Tour in 2019. He’s grabbed a few wins on the European Tour, but is still searching for that breakthrough in the U.S. He’ll be motivated even more with the major coming up.
My last add in this range: Russell Knox at +8000. Knox has been playing pretty solid golf for a while now, but the putter has really held him back. Prior to his missed cut at the Heritage, he had played the weekend in 10 straight events. He also put up a good result in the team event with Brian Stuard.
In a weaker field, I’ll focus on this portion of the field even more since the stars are either taking the week off or are focused elsewhere.
I’ll start with Brian Stuard at 100-1. The Knox/Stuard combo was great at Zurich, and of the two, Stuard is probably in the best form with three top 20s in his past four starts. I wanted to bet that pair in the team event, but the number was a little too short. I don’t mind taking a shot with both individually this week.
I’m also going with Adam Schenk at 150-1. Schenk finished 13th at Quail Hollow and seventh at the tour’s last Texas stop in San Antonio a few weeks back, so his form is solid. Schenk wasn’t great here last year, but he did make the cut and maybe that year of experience on the course will prove important.
Lastly, we’ll back Shawn Stefani at 150-1. He’s been pretty hit-or-miss all year, but is coming off a 13th-place finish at Quail Hollow, and he’s playing in his home state. Stefani also finished 26th here a year ago when he wasn’t in great form, so I think there’s a good chance he improves on that this week.
The Byron Nelson Card
- Ryan Moore +5000 (.66 units)
- Rafa Cabrera-Bello +5000 (.66 units)
- Pat Perez +6600 (.5 units)
- Russell Knox +8000 (.41 units)
- Brian Stuard +10000 (.33 units)
- Adam Schenk +15000 (.22 units)
- Shawn Stefani +15000 (.22 units)
Total Stake: 3 units
Season: -14.33 Units