This week, we are in week two of four, in the FedEx Cup play-offs, and we should be set for another exciting week on the PGA Tour. The Deutsche Bank Championship has been part of the Tour schedule since 2003, and became part of the FedEx Cup play-offs when they started in 2007. This event is different to most weeks, for one main reason, the schedule. Instead of playing Thursday-Sunday, the Deutsche Bank Championship is played Friday-Monday, so that the finish coincides with Labour Day, so it gives you an extra day to make your picks if you want to.
The top-100 players in the FedEx Cup Rankings are making the short trip from Liberty National, to TPC Boston this week, and the guys who just about squeezed their way into the top -100 last week will be looking for even more this time around. The featured group at the head of the betting this week have all won this event in the past, and only one of them doesn’t come into this week with a win this season, Rory Mcilroy. Other than Mcilroy, Tiger Woods (2006 winner), Phil Mickelson (2007 winner) and 2003 champion Adam Scott, will all be looking to build on already fantastic seasons so far. Of course Scott won last week, and with a major and a play-off win now under his belt he looks set to push Tiger Woods all the way for Player of the Year. Scott has a fantastic record here in recent years, after winning the event in 2003, Scott has embraced the tournament under play-off conditions, finishing T17 (2007), T5 (2010), T8 (2011) and T7 (2012) in four of his last 5 attempts since 2007, a great record for any player. Let’s look at why the course may suit these players.
The Course: TPC Boston, Par 71, 7214 yards. The course itself has only been open since 2002, so only a year before hosting this event for the first time in 2003. The course does not play tough, as highlighted by the winning scores in recent years (-20, -15, -22, -17) and players will be looking to take advantage of the easier challenge this week. With big greens to aim for, players will have to shoot very low in order to win, and making putts will be more than important than ever, as players look to get the advantage over their fellow competitors. Birdie Average and Total Putting will therefore be my starting point when making my selections this week, however it’s also worth noting that 5 of the last 6 winners have had a win earlier in the year, most of them in recent weeks so it certainly appears even more obvious than other weeks to side with players who are in red hot form, and have preferably won in recent weeks.
To elaborate on what I touched on in the Course section, players who win this event have normally come off the back of a recent win, or at least a win on the season and that could be vital again this week. Last years winner Rory Mcilroy had just won the PGA Championship, so he fits that bill, as does 2011 champion Webb Simpson, who won the Wyndham Championship just two weeks previous to this event, so it’s certainly not a complete coincidence and is something I’ve chosen not too ignore. Although Charley Hoffman didn’t win in 2010 prior to winning this event, and in the process breaking the mould, he did then follow his win up with a 6th in the Tour Championship, so his game must of been in great shape. To summarise, it seems almost necessary to be a winner earlier in the year to get the win here, with Charley Hoffman and Olin Browne being the exceptions. This was Adam Scott’s first PGA Tour win, back in 2003, however he had won a month earlier on the European Tour, which further supports our trend.
With everyone closely taken into account, here are my selections for the 2013 Deutsche Bank Championship.
Adam Scott 12/1 (PaddyPower & Boylesports, StanJames) 5 pts win: I simply cannot look past Adam Scott this week, and although I have other fancies at bigger prices, I’m finding impossible believe that Scott won’t be in the running come Monday evening. He is a recent winner, as recent as last week, so that’s the first thing working in his favour. Secondly Adam Scott is enjoying a career-best year so far, which I see only getting better, as he looks to add to his Masters win and Barclays win in the play-offs. In my opinion he is the best player in the world at present, something I wouldn’t of said until he picked up that win last week. Add to that his consistent performances at this track and you have, in my opinion a worthy 2nd favourite this week. I think he has a better chance than the favourite Tiger Woods, who is rumoured to be struggling with injury and I just cannot leave Adam out of the staking plan this week. The only concern I have with Scott is his putting. It wasn’t at it’s best last week, and will need to improve to keep himself above the competition and hopefully his past success here at TPC Boston will settle him down, on and around the greens. At 12/1 he’s a short price, but deservedly so, therefore I’m happy to side with him regardless.
Brandt Snedeker 45/1 (PaddyPower & StanJames) 1.5pts e/w: Brandt Snedeker features so much in these articles, that I’ve almost run out of things to say, and praise to give him… But not quite! Snedeker was tipped last week, because at 35/1 I thought he was overpriced, obviously he wasn’t. Roll on a week and he’s 10 points bigger at 45/1, which in my opinion is an overreaction to last week, and hopefully proves just that. His form in this event is exemplary and hopefully he can take the confidence from that. Unlike last week, the Deutsche Bank is always played at the same course (TPC Boston) so there will be nothing new that Snedeker has to try and work out. Last week we saw a completely different course to last time out, and it showed, so hopefully Snedeker can bounce back again, something that he’s proved a very, very good at. Two wins this year, one of them coming in recent weeks means fits the trend in that respect, and he’s also as a rule a good putter, another positive. Snedeker finished 6th here in 2012, following previous results of, T3 (2011) & T5 (2010) so he’s definitely enjoyed the course in recent years. I simply think he’s too big this week, and as you know I’m a fan, so I’m going to keep the faith. He did look out of sorts last week at the Barclays, but I feel he’s too good of a player to dwell on that, and he should welcome the timing of this event to get himself back in form.
Jordan Spieth 45/1 (StanJames) 1.5pts e/w: Jordan Spieth hasn’t featured too much on my tips this season, in fact this is only the second time, but believe me when I say this, I often have to find reasons to rule him it out most weeks. This week, at 50/1 I wasn’t prepared to do that, he falls into almost every category I wan’t him too this week, with putting being the only iffy point and I’m happy to look passed it this time around. Firstly Spieth has a win this year, at the John Deere Classic, where he had to shoot -19 to fight his way into a play-off with one of the tournament’s favourites Zach Johnson, and also David Hearn, and the -19 score is around what he needs to shoot to win here in TPC Boston. He also ranks highly (23rd) in the Birdie Average stat which is another thing going in the youngster’s favour here in Boston, so I’m happy to include him in my plans. Not only did he win the John Deere Classic, but he also finished 2nd, losing the play-off to Patrick Reed at the Wyndham Championship two weeks ago, so he’s bang in form. He got off to a shaky start at the Barclays last time out, but managed to bounce back comfortably, once again finishing in top-20, a good start to his FedEx Cup career. I really do fancy him to carry his form over from last week, and the rest of the season in pursuit of yet another victory at his young age.
Jonas Blixt 100/1 (SpreadEx) 1pt e/w: I’m going to forgive Jonas Blixt of his final round 81 last week, and tip him to bounce back immediately at a big price this week. Blixt put himself once again bang in contention at the end of round 3 last week, and I’m pretty sure that 81 isn’t going to prevent him playing well here. In 2012, on his debut at TPC Boston, the Swede posted another top-20 finish, and he’s going to be just, if not more confident this time around in my opinion. his win at the Greenbrier already puts him in good stead to be in the frame, and with a 4th place finish at the PGA he looks to be playing some of his best golf. He was primed for another big week after three rounds last week, and if he can cut out the mental side of his final round last week, his game is there to do well. He played in the final round with Rickie Fowler, and fulfilled the promise he made that if the two were ever paired together he would wear Fowler’s signature Sunday Orange, something he way not want to do again. It could of been something as small as the added attention from that stunt that affected his game, so I’ve got faith he can do well again.
Total Points Staked on PGA Tour this week: 13
Total Points Staked (inc European Tour) this week: 26
Profit/Loss for 2013: +58.65
With a Friday start, we’re set for a Monday finish so make sure you keep your eye out for the final round times on Monday, especially if these players are involved. Still looking to add another winner as ever, and I’m happy that these players have more than enough quality to get the job done. It’s not often that I pick someone as short as Adam Scott, but it had to be done this week as he’s at the peak of his game, and he could easily win again. Thanks for reading!