16 Golf Picks for the Northern Trust: Outrights, Longshots, Props & Matchup Bets
Chris Keane, Getty Images. Pictured: Shane Lowry
- Outright winners. Longshots. Prop picks. Matchup Bets.
- Our golf betting analysts highlight their 16 (!) favorite picks for the Northern Trust.
- Find out why some like Jason Day to win at TPC Boston, Patrick Reed to have a top-20 finish and more.
The 2020 FedEx Cup Playoffs get underway this week with the 2020 Northern Trust at TPC Boston in Norton, Mass.
Bryson DeChambeau is the favorite at +1100 but things are quite bunched at the top of the board with Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Jason Day and Xander Schauffele all listed at 20-1 or lower at DraftKings.
Our golf analysts share their favorite outright bets, sleeper picks, props and matchups for the 2020 Northern Trust:
Jason Day (+2300, $10 bet wins $230)
He’s baaaaack. It wasn’t so long ago that we were right to wonder whether Day would ever return to the world-class status for which he’d established himself years ago. From last year’s Masters to this year’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, he didn’t post a single top-five, a span of 14 starts.
In his past four, though, he’s finished 4th-6th-4th-7th, suggesting his first victory in nearly two-and-a-half years could be right around the corner.
While he’s never won at TPC Boston, he does own a second, a third and a total of eight top-25s in 11 starts. Just a few months ago, it would’ve been a surprise to see the former world No. 1 in contention.
This week, it’ll be a surprise if he isn’t.
Jason Day (+2300, $10 bet wins $230)
Day has four consecutive top-10 finishes and is in a prime spot to get back to the winner’s circle this week at The Northern Trust. Jason is no stranger to success this time of year having finished 5th (2010), 2nd (2014), 1st (2015), 4th (2016), and 6th (2017) in the first leg of the FedEx Cup Playoffs.
In his past 24 rounds he ranks seventh in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green and third in the field in Strokes Gained: Par 5. If Day can complement his newly regained ball-striking form with his typical hot putter, he has a good chance to be the one hoisting the trophy on Sunday.
Patrick Reed (+3000)
It looks like Jason Day will be quite popular this week, so I’ll take a look at the other guy on my card, Patrick Reed.
He’s technically the defending champion of this event, albeit on a different course, but he’s played TPC Boston well also. He’s got three top-six finishes in his last four starts at this track.
He was also 2nd off the tee last week at the Wyndham and gained a little over four strokes with the approach. Ball striking is always the concern with Reed, but it appears that is rounding into form as well.
Collin Morikawa (+2500)
Wash, rinse, repeat. Two of my last five writeups have been on Morikawa, each resulting in an outright win.
There really is no reason to change course at TPC Boston, where ball-striking and Greens in Regulation (GIR) should you guide you to your picks.
The winner of this event will likely be hot with his irons and Morikawa is 14th in ball-striking and 23rd in GIR, so he ticks those boxes. Perhaps most importantly, the newly-minted PGA Champion ranks second in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green.
Shane Lowry (+10000, $10 wins $1,000)
He wasn’t quite the bubble boy, but Lowry snuck into the first playoff event, thanks to a solid finish in Greensboro.
Now that he’s in, there’s no reason he can’t contend. Already a major and WGC winner, he could become the 13th player to also add a playoff victory to his resume. (Fun bit of trivia with the dirty dozen who already have: Tiger Woods, Keegan Bradley, Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Patrick Reed, Dustin Johnson, Jason Day, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, Justin Rose, Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh.)
Lowry is already trending in the right direction and playing with the proverbial house money could be a huge advantage this week.
Joel Dahmen (+17500)
Dahmen finished 10th at the PGA Championship and 20th at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational, giving him eight top-20 finishes in 12 events in 2020.
Since January at Torrey Pines, Dahmen hasn’t lost strokes off the tee or with his approach, with the exception of the two events at Muirfield Village.
Dahmen didn’t quite make my card this week, but that was only because of the way I constructed it for the playoffs. I do like him as a top-20 play this week, though.
Harris English (+9000)
English is clicking in the metrics I’m weighing this week. Not only does he rank 15th in ball-striking and 11th in Greens in Regulation (GIR), English also has good course history at TPC Boston with four made cuts in his last five trips to Norton, Mass.
English also brings great form with him to Boston as he’s finished inside the top-23 in eight of his last nine events.
Matthew Wolff (+6000)
Wolff was a few missed short putts away from winning the PGA Championship. Instead, the 21-year-old had to watch fellow young superstar Collin Morikawa hoist the Wanamaker Trophy.
A fourth-place finish at his first-ever major is nothing to scoff at however, and that performance was on the heels of a 12th-place finish defending his title at the 3M Open. He added those recent finishes to another near-victory finishing second at the Rocket Mortgage Classic earlier this season.
In addition to his hot recent form, Wolff is a perfect fit for TPC Boston. He has the length to challenge the reachable par 4’s and to gain eagle opportunities on the Par 5’s. If Wolff has learned anything from his recent close calls, he has a good shot to get into contention on Sunday.
Russell Henley Top-30 Finish (+188, $10 bet wins $18.80)
Over his past handful of events, Henley’s ball-striking has been tremendous, but it’s been the putter which has let him down. Well, it looked like he finally figured something out on the weekend in Greensboro.
After a strokes gained putting number of -1.64 in R1, he was +0.52 in R2, +2.70 in R3 and +1.99 in R4. His record at TPC Boston isn’t anything special, though his lone finish better than T-40 was a runner-up back in 2014, so at least there is some positive history. I don’t mind top-10/20 plays on Henley, too, but top-30 in a 125-player field should be a safe play.
Patrick Reed Top-20 Finish (+150)
Simply put, Reed is in solid form and plays this course well.
Reed has gained strokes with his driver in seven of his last eight events. The last time he had such a streak was in 2019 and he capped it with a victory at The Northern Trust. It’s a different course this time around, but when Reed’s driver is working, he’s capable of contending in any event.
Scottie Scheffler Top-20 Finish (+250)
Scheffler flipped a switch at some point between the two events at Muirfield Village.
The former Texas Longhorn missed three straight cuts ending with The Workday Charity Open and then he got hot, finishing T22-T15-T4 in his next three outings, all of which were in tough fields. Scheffler is 24th in ball-striking and 20th in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green.
He’s capable of hanging with the big dogs this week.
Billy Horschel Top-5 Finish (+1100)
It’s Billy Ho season, baby!
In his past six events, Horschel trails only Day, Morikawa, Thomas, and Xander in Strokes Gained: Total per round. Billy has been a staple in the FedEx Cup Playoffs since his Tour Championship victory in 2014.
En route to that championship, he had a heartbreaking defeat at TPC Boston finishing second to Chris Kirk. He went on to win the next two playoff events (BMW Championship and TOUR Championship) in back-to-back weeks to secure the FedExCup Trophy.
After another heartbreaking second-place finish last week, we could see Billy get in the mix to repeat those impressive performances leading up to East Lake.
This is the time of year when Billy Ho gets hot, and stays hot.
Sungjae Im (-112) over Matt Kuchar
It’s almost like Kuchar has skated by on reputation and world ranking (which is somehow still 23rd) without the books really acknowledging how average he’s been. The reality is that he hasn’t finished in the top-20 in eight starts, dating back to February.
Granted, Im was in a bit of a “slump” as well, but he looked like he got things turned around in Greensboro last week. If I was ranking this entire field, I’d have Sungjae at least 25-30 spots higher than Kuch, so this one is an easy play for me.
Tyrrell Hatton (-137) over Harold Varner III
This is a weird matchup to see because these two players really aren’t even close to the same caliber.
Hatton appears to be in a bit of a slump but his missed cut at the PGA Championship can be chalked up to poor putting. The Englishman finished 12th here in 2018, while Varner has yet to crack the top-30 in this event.
Overall in their careers, Hatton in 17-9-1 against Varner in the same event, so I’ll take a chance with the better player and lay a little juice, especially on a course that should fit his eye.
Rory McIlroy (+110) over Bryson DeChambeau
It seems like nobody wants to bet McIlroy, who was considered the best player in the world before the hiatus. Although Rory has not missed a cut in over a year, the Northern Irishman has just one top-20 finish during The Return to Golf.
Rory struggled with driver at the PGA Championship, while his putter failed him at the St. Jude. At Memorial, it was his scrambling that wobbled him.
All that said, I’ll take the plus-money on Rory against DeCheambeau. Not only is McIlroy still fourth in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green and playing on a more forgiving course this week, but he’s also won more money at the FedEx Cup than anybody else.
Sure, DeChambeau has won on this track before and has five top-10 finishes since the pause, but he’s struggled hitting Greens in Regulation over his last three events.
Kevin Kisner (-112) over Justin Rose
Over his past 12 rounds Justin Rose ranks 58th in the field in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, 68th in Strokes Gained: Approach, and 97th in Strokes Gained: Around the Green. Simply put, he has been playing some truly awful golf lately.
Meanwhile, Kevin Kisner is coming off an impressive third-place showing at Sedgefield. Kiz is a bentgrass putting specialist and in his last three tournaments he has gained 5.0, 5.1, and 8.1 strokes putting on the field.
In his past two events he has gained 4.9 strokes on approach at the PGA Championship and 5.3 strokes on approach at the Wyndham. At a second-shot golf course, I’ll take the guy with the hot irons.