2024 RBC Heritage Data-Driven Picks: Xander Schauffele, Keegan Bradley & More

2024 RBC Heritage Data-Driven Picks: Xander Schauffele, Keegan Bradley & More article feature image

Via Getty Images/Action Network Design. Pictured (left to right): Keegan Bradley, Xander Schauffele & Russell Henley.

Initially built in 1969, Harbour Town is a Pete Dye track that accentuates strategy and rewards taking on risk, like many of his courses. Dye did receive help on the project from Jack Nicklaus, which gave the then-young American his first taste of working on a property in his career.

This course is tight off the tee, with tree-lined fairways that forge a path of less-than-driver appeal because of the forced layups throughout. That derives the difference-making answer since the field experiences nearly an 11% uptick when diving into second shots between 125-200 yards versus Tour average and just under a 9% reduction in anticipated approaches from over 200 yards.

That distribution renders a unique split since it minimizes distance when most holes possess a club-down option as the optimal route and enhances mid-iron play for golfers who often find themselves beaten by the elite players in the world with distance.

If you haven't already, you can find me on Twitter (@TeeOffSports). There, I provide a link to my pre-tournament model, a powerful and interactive data spreadsheet that allows user input to create custom golf rankings. That sheet is released every Monday, so be sure to check it out and construct your own numbers from my database of information.

2024 RBC Heritage Data-Driven Picks

Every Monday, I take an aggregated total from a handful of books I respect and form a median outright price. None of that suggests you wouldn't be able to find better prices if you shopped around, but that is a total I use to compare against a golfer's outright odds movements.

Those returns indicate where the square versus sharp money has entered the market and shows potential DFS value for those looking to round out their player pool. Let's dive into some of the shifts in the market and see how they line up with the outright bets I discussed on the Links + Locks 2024 RBC Heritage Betting Preview podcast.

2024 RBC Heritage Biggest Market Movers

We do this every week when trying to find sharp versus square movement. More often than not, the activity from the public ends up in a direction that falters for all bettors placing wagers on those golfers to win the event.

My answer here doesn't derive thoughts from within my model. I would have a stronger or weaker stance for some of these players than others, but this list fully encompasses the strategic course narrative when you look into names like Lucas Glover, Shane Lowry, Brendon Todd and Harris English. 

I tend to think that group plays better as head-to-head targets or DFS options, but I do understand the intrigue of why they are attracting real dollars in the market.

The best North Carolina sports betting apps are now live! Learn more and register for the best bonus offers.

2024 RBC Heritage Worst Current Values

My list above has turned into a square grouping of names in the space.

You get the overemphasized market boost that Matt Fitzpatrick and Jordan Spieth have received from winning this contest in back-to-back years. You also get the Masters bump for Max Homa and Si Woo Kim that likely shifted their odds way too far across this board.

It doesn't mean that these options can't and won't win, but I am always okay with fading market corrections that have gone too far in the other direction. Chasing the wrong end of the number is a negative-EV outcome that I want to avoid as a professional gambler.

2024 RBC Heritage Outright Picks

I talked about this on Links + Locks this week, but these boards have been frustrating because they are pricing Scottie Scheffler as a commodity who can't be wagered on value-wise while also not drifting prices for players down the board,

That is a tough look when pinpointing an edge in these markets since most names have been priced out of the equation. You don't have to look any further than Cameron Young, Si Woo Kim and Tommy Fleetwood, three options I would have loved to have backed but couldn't get there at their reduced totals.

While I might look back in frustration that they didn't make my outright card, I decided to take an approach that fit my model when analyzing long-term value.

I started with Xander Schauffele at 12-1. That is a price you can still find readily available throughout the industry, with a 13-1 also available at bet365

I've made this argument for the past few weeks when talking about Schauffele, but the lack of recent win equity presents such a weird dynamic because we are consistently landing at this same crossroads answer. Books are masking the odds to avoid exposure from sharp bettors, but a lot of sharp money continues to push Schauffele further down these already value-reduced boards. 

To me, this is the expensive version of what we did with Stephan Jaeger for 8-10 events over a year. If this continues for that long, it isn't going to end up being a positive expected play long-term, but it's not as if the American is making every card of mine. In reality, this is only the second time I have wagered on him in 2024, and the first just came last week at 22-1 at Augusta. 

We can still pick and choose our spots here and realize positive expected equity by going that route. 

I also took Russell Henley at 55-1, although that price has now been pushed more into the 40-1 territory. I always mention those moves because it is highly correlated from a projection standpoint. 

My model graded Henley as a positive trajectory mover for Expected Tee-To-Green production at Harbour Town versus his baseline projection, which added to his 12th-place grade for 'Comp Putting' at this track versus his rank that placed him outside the top 40 when comparing it to any generic course on Tour.

As everyone knows by now, I love ball-strikers who can experience a positive trajectory shift for their putting totals on specific green complexes.

Lastly, I closed my card with Keegan Bradley at 100-1. 

The American ended up grading as one of only 12 players in this tournament to land inside the top half of the field for each metric I weighed this week.

Most of the names outside of Bradley would present the expected high-end favorites, and we really have only been missing a putter from him over the past few events to start getting some of those anticipated spike performances.

My model has seen the 37-year-old gain nearly 1.75 strokes, on average, Off the Tee over his last eight appearances, and the Tee-to-Green production has been positive in seven of those eight tournaments.

My Model's Top Projected Win Equity Choices

  1. Scottie Scheffler
  2. Xander Schauffele
  3. Ludvig Åberg
  4. Patrick Cantlay

Best Values To Consider At New Price (Not In Order Of Perceived Edge)

I still like the three values that I got pre-event. One of the reasons they made my card to begin with is that they were allotted some room to drop in price because of the edge I had for the week.

I hesitated and went back and forth on what to do with Tony Finau and Si Woo Kim. I ultimately decided to let them beat me because of their poor returns with the flat stick. However, I did take Finau -110 over Justin Thomas in a matchup.

How would you rate this article?

This site contains commercial content. We may be compensated for the links provided on this page. The content on this page is for informational purposes only. Action Network makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the information given or the outcome of any game or event.