The Match IV Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Bet Mickelson & Brady vs. Bryson & Rodgers
Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images & Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images for The Match. Pictured from left: Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady.
- Bryson DeChambeau and Aaron Rodgers tee off against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady for the fourth iteration of The Match on Tuesday (5 p.m. ET, TNT).
- Golf writer and betting analyst Jason Sobel breaks down current odds for the matchup and dives deep on each duo's strengths and weaknesses entering The Match IV.
- Find his full betting preview below, including why he's backing Mickelson and Brady to win as +130 underdogs.
The fourth iteration of The Match will be contested on Tuesday afternoon, even if the promotional vehicle for this event figuratively broke down somewhere on the dusty roads in Montana.
In a made-for-TV event such as this, promotion is key, but the early social media chop-busting has devolved into a whiff of apathy — from the masses, sure, but maybe even from the participants, too.
Ironically, for an event being played at 5 p.m. ET on a Tuesday that needs as much momentum-building press as it can get, Phil Mickelson spent much of the past week admonishing certain media for other stories, while Bryson DeChambeau spent it avoiding interviews altogether.
It is well within each player’s prerogative to publicly approach his respective situation however he likes, of course. Nonetheless, it remains telling that the biggest stories surrounding both players recently have nothing to do with what’s going to take place on the course on Tuesday.
If you’re going to watch The Match IV, though, you might as well bet on it — and to me, there’s an obvious edge on which to capitalize.
Bryson DeChambeau & Aaron Rodgers (-177)
Let’s first break down DeChambeau and partner Aaron Rodgers. Or — should we call them #TeamTumultuousness?
Favored at -177, there’s been a lot of noise surrounding this duo recently. Bryson is fresh off a “split” with caddie Tim Tucker, which led to a title defense parlayed into a missed cut at last week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic. And yet, that’s not even a major piece to his off-course story over the past two months.
Admit it: You might only watch The Match to see if Brooks Koepka pops up from the Montana hills to fluster Bryson, perhaps eye-rolling him into oblivion. At the very least, this event should be a two-screen experience, with one eye on the proceedings and another looking at Koepka’s constantly refreshed Twitter page, just waiting for the next Bryson-based barb from his phone.
I’ve heard reports that all of this has left DeChambeau frustrated and maybe just not really enjoying PGA TOUR life in general. That is indeed worrisome for one of the five PGA TOUR players with multiple victories this season.
DeChambeau will at least have a shoulder to lean on in the form of the Green Bay Packers** quarterback Aaron Rodgers ( ** Or whomever Rodgers is playing for by the time they tee it up).
DeChambeau’s soap operas are child’s play compared with those of Rodgers, who has demanded a trade and spoke openly this week about working on his mental health during this offseason.
And, how about this: Based on the time of the match, it could bleed into Game 1 of the NBA Finals featuring the Milwaukee Bucks — a team for which Rodgers owns a minority stake, just in case you were wondering about his focus.
Are DeChambeau & Rodgers Deserving Favorites?
It’s easy to believe that this match hasn’t quite been at the forefront of either player’s thoughts over the past few weeks. So, why are DeChambeau & Rodgers the favorites?
Well, that’s easy: They are respectively better players.
Mickelson might’ve won the PGA Championship two months ago, but it’s impossible to claim that the big-hitting Bryson isn’t the better overall golfer right now. Ranked sixth in the world, he’s employed his special brand of bash-it-and-find-it golf, one which offers him a ceiling as high as just about any player in the game.
Meanwhile, Rodgers is the better-playing quarterback among The Match’s duos, as well. Listed as a 4.6 at Green Bay Country Club, he’s posted just four scores this year, but they were all in the past month: 87, 80, 83 and 83. He’s also admittedly not exactly enamored with the game as much as others.
“Golf is tough in Los Angeles,” he said this week. “There’s not a lot of courses to play, and there’s traffic all the time. When I think about spending an hour sitting in traffic and four-and-a-half hours on the course, I think, ‘What else could I be doing for five-and-a-half hours of my life?’
I could read a book. I could read something interesting on the Internet. I could meditate. I could go for a walk on the beach. I could do just about anything that gives me pleasure besides golf. So that’s what I’ve been doing.”
— Aaron Rodgers
Phil Mickelson & Tom Brady (+130)
As for the other side of this equation, Mickelson’s partner is seven-time Super Bowl winner Tom Brady. And, yes: This might be the first article ever written in which all other competitors were mentioned before the man who just might be the NFL’s GOAT. Mickelson and Brady are the underdogs at +130.
Does Tom Brady Own a Vanity Handicap?
Brady plays to an 8.1 index at posh Seminole Golf Club, but he hasn’t been playing to that number lately. His last seven scores dating back over the past month-and-a-half are 89, 86, 90, 88, 97, 91 and 90.
As we witnessed last year, the Buccaneers quarterback might own a bit of a vanity handicap, or at least one that doesn’t travel — especially in front of the cameras.
Brady did hold it together fairly well while partnering with Mickelson in that one (except for his pants; those split apart). We should expect some “Playing Lessons from the Pros” type of course management from Lefty to help his partner get in the hole in Tuesday’s modified alternate shot format.
Phil Mickelson: The Enduring Constant
All of which leads us to the man who is responsible for making this whole thing happen, again and again: Phil Mickelson
It’s no coincidence that Mickelson has been the constant variable in each edition of this event, his interest in its success extending well beyond simply winning or losing.
And therein lies the aforementioned edge: In any of these made-for-TV exhibition matches, the lean is not necessarily towards the better players, nor the ones in better form. Rather, the edge is found among those who actually care the most.
How to Bet The Match IV
Motivation will only take a golfer so far in a major championship or a PGA TOUR event, where every competitor is suitably engaged. But in a competition like The Match, inspiration is everything.
Mickelson doesn’t just want to win this match, but furthermore he revels in taking the ensuing social media victory lap. That intrepid will should be the biggest X-factor in helping Brady across the finish line against a pair of opponents who, frankly, have a lot of other things on their minds right now.
If you’re going to watch The Match IV — and, really, do you have something better to do on a Tuesday afternoon? — then you might as well bet it. And if you’re going to bet it, then you might as well take the motivated duo with clear heads at plus-money.
The Bet: Mickelson & Brady +130