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FanDuel Strategy

FanDuel Fit: Safeway Open

by Josh Culp
Updated On: September 9, 2020, 2:16 pm ET

A new season kicks off this week at Silverado Resort and Spa in Napa, California. 

A full field of 156 golfers will peg it this week but that field list has already seen plenty of changes as of Tuesday afternoon. Make sure you check and double check on Wednesday night to make sure your golfers still have a tee time. 

The North Course at Silverado has hosted six times here so we do have some history to bank on. However, there are always new names showing up to see a course for the first or second time. Let's run through some stats to see which golfers may like the layout here in Napa. 

Poa Annua Greens

Heading back to Cali this week, it means a return to poa annua greens. They are known to get bumpy as the day goes on and bring in different challenge in terms of reading them, when comparing to bermuda. Let's see who has performed best on courses with poa annua greens over the last two years: 

Kevin Streelman
Erik van Rooyen
Doc Redman
Luke List
Brandt Snedeker
Chez Reavie
Phil Mickelson
Sergio Garcia
Shane Lowry
Jim Furyk
Joel Dahmen
Harold Varner III
Keegan Bradley
Talor Gooch
Mark Hubbard

We can also look at a golfer's performance versus their baseline to see who over-performs most. Here is that list: 

Luke List
Martin Trainer
Kevin Streelman
Phil Mickelson
Tyler McCumber
Zac Blair
Scott Brown
Maverick McNealy
Joseph Bramlett
Kevin Tway
Wyndham Clark
Sam Burns
Scott Stallings
Brandt Snedeker
Brian Stuard

Overlap List: golfers that appear on both lists include Luke List, Kevin Streelman, Phil Mickelson, and Brandt Snedeker

 

Short Courses

Silverado Resort is a par 72 that plays under 7,200 yards. Pretty short by TOUR standards. There are zero par 4s that play over 460 yards. Golfers will put a lot of wedges and short irons in their hands this week if they are driving it straight. Let's see who plays best on shorter layouts: 

Phil Mickelson
Shane Lowry
Sergio Garcia
Will Gordon
Keegan Bradley
Harold Varner III
Sam Burns
Jim Furyk
Chez Reavie
Doc Redman
Rafa Cabrera Bello
Kevin Streelman
Denny McCarthy
Sean O'Hair
Emiliano Grillo

We can also look at a golfer's performance versus their baseline to see who over-performs most. Here is that list: 

Phil Mickelson
Jonathan Byrd
Sam Burns
Seamus Power
Shane Lowry
Hank Lebioda
Rob Oppenheim
Ryan Armour
Tyler Duncan
Fabian Gomez
Keegan Bradley
Harold Varner III
Zac Blair
Patton Kizzire
Rafael Campos

Overlap List: names that show up on both lists include Phil Mickelson, Sam Burns, Shane Lowry, Keegan Bradley, and Harold Varner III

 

 

FanDuel Focus 

Phil Mickelson ($11,800): Following a WD by Kuchar at the top, Lefty is now the highest-priced golfer on FanDuel. You're going to have to pay up to get him into your lineup this week but as you can see from the lists above, this is a perfect course for the 50-year-old Mickelson who grew up on poa. If you can find the value to squeeze then, then Mickelson is a strong option at the top. 

Harold Varner III ($10,500): I always think of HV3 as one of the top wedge players on TOUR so I usually target him on courses like Silverado which are going to give him plenty of chances to utilize that skill. His course-history resume backs up the data with top 20s in three of his last four trips to Napa. Before that, he also posted a T48 here in his 2016 debut which doesn't seem great but he was actually top 5 on the leaderboard after each of the first three rounds before imploding on Sunday. A course well-suited for HV3 and he's not going to break the bank at just $10.5k this week. 

Josh Culp

Josh Culp joined NBC Sports Edge in 2014. The DFS enthusiast from Iowa State can be found on Twitter @futureoffantasy.