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Odds and Ends

Masters props: Bryson, scoring and more

by Will Gray
Updated On: April 7, 2021, 1:38 pm ET

The first major of the year has arrived, and the action extends well beyond the futures market and top-10 prices.

There are props, lots of them, breaking down the action at the Masters. Will defending champ Dustin Johnson break 70 in each of the first two rounds? Can Jordan Spieth go bogey-free for an entire day? Which par-5 will yield the most eagles? Will any player shoot higher than 85?

They're all props that are available at PointsBet Sportsbook, with a number of unique and novelty markets in the mix for one of the biggest weeks on the golf gambling calendar. Here's a look at a few that have caught my attention, ranging from a pair of major champions to a mix of golf and weather prognostication:

Prop selections (odds via PointsBet)

Bryson DeChambeau to make an eagle (+120): This is a selection I had during the November edition, and it turned into quite the sweat: DeChambeau didn't make an eagle until the 13th hole on Sunday. But I'm going back to the well, eager to buy in on Bryson's ability to have one good hole even if I'm not exactly sold that he can string together 72 of them.

The reigning U.S. Open champ has historically struggled on the greens at this event, and he has yet to crack the top 20. But he's not planning to dial back the aggressive game plan, explaining earlier this week that the firm conditions expected could allow him to take even more ambitious lines off the tee than the ones he employed in November. Chief among them could be the tee shots on No. 2 and No. 13, both of which have angles that could allow for some Bryson-only targets and lines.

Throw the third hole into the mix, a potential longshot if he opts to drive the green on the short par-4, and there should be plenty of options for DeChambeau to once again grab a pair of crystal goblets that goes to anyone that makes an eagle. While I don't foresee DeChambeau's short game will allow him to contend for the green jacket, I also don't see him as a threat to miss the cut. It means that I like my chances of getting even money on the premise that Bryson can go 1-for-16 with a go-for-broke approach across the longest holes this week.

Jimmy Walker to make the cut (+200): This was one that I had been mulling early in the week, but seeing that Ben Coley of Sporting Life was on the same page pushed me over the edge. Walker hasn't been heard from much in recent years, as he has dropped to 528th in the world while struggling to balance his game and the toll of Lyme disease. But he actually has a remarkable record at Augusta, having made the cut in each of his seven prior appearances. In fact, last year's 60th-place showing was the only time he finished outside the top 40.

Walker missed six of seven cuts to begin the year, but he seemed to have found something at the Honda Classic where he opened with 69-68 on a difficult layout. He followed it up last week, making the Valero cut in his hometown event after starting with rounds of 72-72. It's not a ton of promise, but it just might be enough as the veteran heads to a course that clearly fits his eye.

Walker should also have plenty of motivation this week. It's the fifth and final year of exempt status stemming from his 2016 PGA Championship victory, which means there's a good chance this is the 42-year-old's final Masters appearance. He'll be looking to potentially go out in style while keeping that made cut streak in tact.

Winning score Over 276.5 (+110): Firm and fast. It's a phrase that you're going to hear a lot of in the coming days, with crispy conditions combining with a promising weather forecast to offer the polar opposite of the soft layout players faced in November. It's been a scoring barrage over the last three years at Augusta National: Dustin Johnson tied the tournament record with his 20-under total last year, and before that Tiger Woods and Patrick Reed shot 13 and 15 under, respectively. But this week could harken back to editions from earlier in the last decade, when single digits under par was enough to slip into the green jacket.

I think a correlated play here could be First Round Leading Score Over 65.5 (-143), as I think scoring could be relatively bunched in the early going. But given the juice and the potential for a single outlier (like in 2018 when Charley Hoffman opened with a 65 that was four clear of the field), I prefer to lean on the 72-hole scoring market.

From 2012-17, only Jordan Spieth's historic 2015 performance featured a winning score below 276 (par is 288, so 276 equates to 12 under). I think with the conditions expected this week, we're in for a similar run of scoring this time around and you'll see a winning score around 10 under.

Any hole-in-one during the tournament (-150): Yes, it's a little chalky. But it's also got a strong chance to cash. We have all seen the YouTube highlight reels of the various aces on No. 16, when the pin gets tucked in that bowl on the left side and everyone in the field knows the exact spot on the hill to hit that will allow the ball to trundle down to the target.

The only hesitation about this prop is the fact that, well, aces outside of No. 16 are hard to come by. An ace on the iconic 12th is almost unheard of, while Nos. 4 and 6 are both pretty lengthy. So your focus will be on Redbud, but with 88 players in the field I like the chances of someone finding the target and erupting in celebration.

A more aggressive option would be to take any ace by an American (+175), since you'll still have almost half the field at your disposal. But I'll lay the juice and avoid a situation where I hear an ace cheer and then realize it's from a "rest of the world" player and doesn't help my cause.

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Will Gray

Will Gray joined Golf Channel in 2007 and currently serves as a staff writer for GolfChannel.com. Gray has been covering fantasy golf since 2012 and is a regular contributor to the Golf Central blog and covers several PGA Tour events each year. He's also a regular contributor to several digital properties on GolfChannel.com, including Stat Man, On the Clock, Fantasy Central, Grill Room and the Monday Scramble podcast.