2022 Rocket Mortgage Classic Odds, Sleeper Picks: Brendan Steele Among 4 Dark Horses to Watch

2022 Rocket Mortgage Classic Odds, Sleeper Picks: Brendan Steele Among 4 Dark Horses to Watch article feature image

(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) Pictured: Brendan Steele.

The PGA TOUR stays in the Midwest for another week, turning to Detroit Golf Club for the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

This marks the fourth year this event has been hosted at this venue, which has produced a few surprise winners. There was no surprise when Bryson DeChambeau, at the height of his powers, took the trophy at -23 in 2020. The year prior, Nate Lashley was not only a shocking winner, but he also won by a commanding six-stroke margin.

Last season, Cameron Davis crashed the party with a playoff victory, his first win on TOUR, to launch himself into the top 100 of the Official World Golf Rankings for the first time in his career.

With a mediocre top end of the field, this week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic offers those further down the board a similar chance to make a name for themselves. These four players have some value as the dark horse who steals a win on Sunday:

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Brendan Steele +6600 (BetMGM)

Per DataGolf, Steele has been the second-best player from tee to green in this week’s field over the last six months. Some of that might feel wonky. Six months is a small-ish sample, but that includes 38 rounds over 12 events for Steele. It’s also weighed by the weakness of the Rocket Mortgage field, yet after expanding the search to include the best players in the world, Steele still ranks eighth from tee to green over that period.

He's been dragged down by bad chipping and worse putting, though it’s easy to imagine Steele’s short game clicking enough for one week to power a run up the leaderboard.

It hasn’t happened yet for Steele, who boasts no top-fives since the start of March 2022 (other than the Zurich Classic, a team event). At the only two events where he gained strokes on the green in that span, Steele finished T9 at the PGA Championship and T10 at the Memorial.

If he can find that groove again on the greens, his swing puts him in position to contend.

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Michael Thorbjornsen +12500 (BetMGM)

The chances of an amateur winning on the PGA TOUR are low, but are they low enough to continue the current 31-year drought on TOUR?

No amateur has won a PGA TOUR event since Phil Mickelson nabbed the Northern Telecom Open back in 1991, which feels like eight lifetimes ago (especially for Phil).

Thorbjornsen has the talent to hang on TOUR. He showed that with a solo fourth finish at the Travelers Championship this season. He also has a knack for winning. He took home the titles at his home state Massachusetts Amateur and the Western Amateur, one of the premier Am events on the calendar.

He comes into the Rocket Mortgage well rested, having not played since the Palmer Cup in early July, where he went 2-2 for Team USA.

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JJ Spaun +16000 (FanDuel)

Spaun hasn’t finished in the top 25 of an event since the Masters back in April, yet he has some value in Detroit this weekend.

In three appearances at this venue, Spaun has made all three cuts and finished no worse than T32. In the three years this event has been played at Detroit Golf Club, only Cameron Tringale can beat that feat.

Spaun already has a win this season and would seem an unlikely two-time winner, but his mix of comfort at this course and ability to get hot makes him a viable outright at this price.

Doc Redman +20000 (BetMGM)

Redman has a pretty good track record in Detroit, most notably his runner-up finish here back in 2019. He followed it up with a T21 in 2020 as well.

A comfortable venue might be a sight for sore eyes for Redman, who has missed seven of eight cuts and doesn’t have a top 20 in an individual event all season.

His T21 at the Barbasol Championship a few weeks back could be an indicator of better things to come, with Detroit Golf Club as the launching point back to better play for Redman.

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