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Playing the Tips

Our Picks: Northern Trust Open

by Mike Glasscott
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET



Welcome to Playing the Tips!


Each week this will be the one-stop resource to soak in all the picks from our group of fantasy staffers from Rotoworld.com. We’ll have all of our selections from the GolfChannel.com, Yahoo! Fantasy Golf, my weekly selection for One-and-Done players plus DFS love from Josh Culp and European Tour insight from Dave Tindall.



GolfChannel.com Fantasy Golf



Northern Trust Open








2015 Earnings: $4,606,788

2015 Rank: 3,101


More proof in fantasy land that if it looks too good to be true, it probably is unless it was Tiger Woods circa 2000 as Walker finished T21. Johnson didn’t even win the Group 2 flight as champion Snedeker handled that business. Levin and O’Hair made the cut but hardly made any noise to startle the leaders.


I’ve dropped back while O has entered the top 10. #dichotomy


Since I’m a glutton for punishment…


Group 1: Jimmy Walker

Group 2: Dustin Johnson

Group 3: K.J. Choi

Group 4: Charlie Beljan



ANALYSIS: Walker’s course history is very solid and his recent play will have him longing for a top finish again this week. It’s a home game for the “new” Johnson and having his support staff on site can’t possibly hurt; neither does his history or T4 last week at Pebble. This game isn’t won in Groups 3 and 4 but some nuggets can be found down here. Choi is 14-14 career and Beljan has finished P2 and T12 in his last two at Riviera. It always looks great on paper Tuesday evening…




Rob Bolton





2015 Earnings: $4,665,247

2015 Rank: 2,861



Group 1: Bubba Watson

Group 2: Dustin Johnson

Group 3: Brendan Steele

Group 4: Charlie Beljan



ANALYSIS: I have a feeling this won’t be the only Watson we see in Group 1 nor the last Johnson or Beljan. Rob’s gone California Dreamin’ with Steele for Group 3.




Ryan O’ Sullivan





2015 Earnings: $7,591,183

2015 Rank: 10



Group 1: Bubba Watson

Group 2: Dustin Johnson

Group 3: William McGirt

Group 4: Charlie Beljan


ANALYSIS: Yep, that’s ANOTHER WINNER for O as Snedeker in Group 2 did the business last week at Pebble. Gamers ask how they can get into the top 10 in these games. Well, pick the winner five out of six weeks to start…Since I have Beljan and Johnson this week, I’ll congratulate last year’s 54-hole leader McGirt on his first-ever win in advance.




Ned Brown





2015 Earnings: $5,679,577

2015 Rank: 581



Group 1: Bubba Watson

Group 2: Dustin Johnson

Group 3: Charles Howell III

Group 4: Charlie Beljan



ANALYSIS: Ned remains in the top 600 as Vaughn Taylor in Group 4 made up some ground for Johnson > Snedeker in Group 2. This week, he makes it four-from-four on Johnson and Beljan and three-from-four on Watson. Gulp.




Yahoo! Fantasy Golf



Ned Brown is a long-time contributor for Rotoworld Golf.  He’s had documented success in Yahoo!’s game for years.  Even if you’re confident in your selections for that game, give his insight a read. He’ll lead us off each week in the Yahoo! game.



“Pure Spin”


AT&T Points: 158

WINTER Segment Points: 1,098

WINTER Segment Rank: 1,400




Group A


Bubba Watson-- The lefty played well in the fall and that has carried over into 2015 with 10th place at the HTOC and added T2 last time out at the WMPO. His recent history at the NTO is very good with a T13 in '12 and a championship last year.


Bill Haas-- Unlike last week, there are quite a few good choices for the second spot in Group A. I'm going with Bill Haas, who has played pretty well so far in 2015. He won at Humana and was T19 last time out at the FIO.




J.B. Holmes, Webb Simpson, Sergio Garcia




Group B



Jimmy Walker-- He has been playing so well this season that his T21 last week at the AT&T was a disappointment to fantasy owners. His recent results of a pair of T4s in '11 and '12, at T16 in '13 and a T20 last year is very solid.


Dustin Johnson-- He played better last week as he got more rounds under his belt (T4). He has had very good recent success at the NTO with a T4 in '12 and solo second last year.


Jordan Spieth-- It's real tempting to try to fade Spieth, but has a pair of T7s in his last three starts. He also played well here last year when he finished T12.


Bernd Wiesberger-- I feel good enough about my other picks that I'm going to take a bit of a shot with the Austrian. This will be his first NTO, but he has been on fire in 2015 with a T6 at Abu Dhabi, a third place in Qatar, a T4 Dubai and a second place last time out at the Malaysian Open.





Hideki Matsuyama, Brandt Snedeker, Charles Howell III, Kevin Chappell




Group C



Charl Schwartzel-- He missed the cut last time out in Qatar, but before that he was playing well T9 at Abu Dhabi and a somewhat disappointing second place at the South African Open. In his only two starts at the NTO, he recorded a T3 in '13 and a fifth place last year.


Keegan Bradley-- Like the fourth pick in Group B, the second pick in Group C can go to quite few guys. I'm using Keegan Bradley, because of his solid recent history at Riviera of a T2 in '12, a T16 in '13 and a T20 last year.





Francesco Molinari, Sang-Moon Bae, Brendan Steele, Ryan Moore




Ryan O’Sullivan (O)



The Golf Aficionado”



WMPO Points: 194

WINTER Segment Points: 1,151

WINTER Segment Rank: 146




Group A:


Bubba Watson

J.B. Holmes



Group B:


Jordan Spieth

Brandt Snedeker

Jimmy Walker

Dustin Johnson



Group C:


Charl Schwartzel

Keegan Bradley




Rob Bolton





WMPO Points: 158

WINTER Segment Points: 1,053

WINTER Segment Rank: 4,631




Group A:


Bubba Watson

Sergio Garcia



Group B:


Dustin Johnson

Jordan Spieth

Jimmy Walker

Hideki Matsuyama



Group C:


Charl Schwartzel

Brendan Steele









WMPO Points: 144

WINTER Segment Points: 1,039

WINTER Segment Rank: 6,144



Do as I do, not as I do? I had too much fun Valentine’s weekend and forgot to fix my lineups both Saturday and Sunday. At least I gave you Sneds, Day and Johnson in Group B. Too bad I never played Snedeker in any of the four rounds. Oh, and Palmer got the start on Sunday when Holmes went 65 but whatever. Palmer had missed the cut…


My job is to get you who I think will do the best in the format; your job is to TIME IT PERFECTLY. You should forget to set your line up sometime. It’s very liberating. Or maybe that was the booze.




Group A:



Bubba Watson

Bill Haas



Both of these boys just pound fairways and greens and that’s not a problem this week or any. They’ve both won here recently and have both won recently. Garcia never MC and Holmes deserved another look this week as well if chasing.




Group B:



Jimmy Walker

Jordan Spieth

Brandt Snedeker

Dustin Johnson


Best better be bringing the hammer this week in Group B. Matsuyama and Watney could provide Plan B (see what I did there?) if saving starts for Spieth or Walker is on the radar.




Group C:


Charl Schwartzel

Robert Streb



With Schwartzel’s course history in the two years he’s played (T3 and fifth last year) playing him this week is straight defense. The second pick in the group will cause the separation and if Streb doesn’t do it, Hotty Toddy should garner a look-see as should Italian Francesco Molinari.




Daily Fantasy Sports [DFS]



Josh Culp is our resident DFS guru. Every week, he’ll publish his lineup and alternatives for DraftKings.com.



Northern Trust Open



This week DraftKings is a giving us a free shot at $1,000. This is the perfect opportunity to test your skills in the realm of daily fantasy golf.


Compete against Josh's team below and draft your free entry now: http://partners.draftkings.com/SH11k




DraftKings Picks



Dustin Johnson ($13,700) ... Polished off a fourth-place finish last week while playing alongside the great one, Wayne Gretzky. The rust appears to be shed and now he gets to tee it up at another favorable venue. Finished runner-up here last year and deserves to be the main attraction in lineups this week.


J.B. Holmes ($8,800) ... He’s swinging his long clubs as well as anyone right now. I tend to avoid "chasing fantasy points" but Holmes loves Riviera CC and he has five top 15s here as proof.


Keegan Bradley ($7,200) ... Parlayed his 2012 runner-up finish into two more NTO top 20s. After a rocky 2011 debut, he's posted just one-of-12 rounds over par.


Ryan Moore ($7,700) ... He has an incredibly high strike-rate for how low he is priced. He's won four times since 2009 and has top 30s in three of his last four at the Northern Trust.


George McNeill ($6,000) ... Course history is the theme of the week as he sports six top 50s in seven starts at this event. He has gone off the radar for many gamers after closing out 2014-15 with missed cuts in three of his last five but he's 4-for-6 this season.


Fred Couples ($5,200) ... Two of his four cuts at this event have come in his last three starts here but his history in undeniable. Two wins and 14 top 10s in 32 tries. Augusta National and Riviera Country Club are two venues were you have to look at Boom Boom.




Other Picks to Consider



Alternate for Johnson: Jimmy Walker ($12,300) ... Safer than Johnson and hugely valuable in cash games, Walker's love for Riviera CC is well documented, so don't be shy here.


Alternate for McNeill: Cameron Tringale ($6,100) ... Sometimes I fall in love with golfers that are closing in on their first PGA TOUR win and back them until they do. Tringale has nothing worse than T24 here so sign me up.


Alternate for Moore: Brian Harman ($6,900) ... A DFS delight as he can make birdies in bunches. Riviera is well suited for lefties and this lefty posted four rounds of sub-70s last year on his way to a T3 finish.





2015 Fantasy Race to Dubai



Dave Tindall is our newest contributor, but he’s been a fixture in Europe. In addition to his weekly previews of European Tour events on Mondays, he’ll share his selections and analysis for the Fantasy Race to Dubai at EuropeanTour.com.





Pick 10 golfers. Players accumulate points based on Race to Dubai (R2D) points earned. Star player’s points are doubled. Unlimited team changes and unlimited star player changes are available each week.



Last week...



A strong collective effort from our Thai 10, highlighted by T2s from Scott Hend and Thongchai Jaidee, saw us finish a fairly pleasing 793rd on the week. That said, T31 for star pick Prom Meesawat still left a feeling that it could have been better. Bottom line was a rise of 1,291 spots.



Current Position:


2,249 (up from 3,540 the previous week)



This Week:


Frustratingly, some of our potential picks (Asian Tour card holders) aren’t available for selection in the European Tour game. This lot should go well though…




Team Tindall

(Team name: YESSIR!)



Anirban Lahiri

Miguel Angel Jimenez

Wade Ormsby

Gaganjeet Bhullar

Jorge Campillo

Marcus Fraser

Prom Meesawat

Romain Wattel

Matt Fitzpatrick



Star Player:


Shiv Kapur


Delhi GC is home and he’ll be enjoying his mother’s cooking this week plus he was T11 in Thailand last time. What more do you want?!




The Rest



•       Anirban Lahiri: Three-time winner on this track; winner two weeks ago. A perfect storm forms.

•       Miguel Angel Jimenez: His rivals agree that this course is perfect for the Spanish bon viveur.

•       Wade Ormsby: The Aussie loves it on this course and is a former winner. T7 last week

•       Gaganjeet Bhullar: Loads of course experience and played well in Dubai.

•       Jorge Campillo: Former Indiana grad was T15 last week and has a T2 on Indian soil.

•       Marcus Fraser: Fourth on his last start in India. He looks to be on the verge of producing a big week soon.

•       Prom Meesawat: Worth another go this week with pressure off. Plenty of strong course form.

•       Romain Wattel: Quality player had a surprising dip but playing his way back into form.

•       Matt Fitzpatrick: Inconsistent to put it kindly but this track should suit the former U.S. Amateur champion.






Each week I painfully writhe and wretch trying to figure out the proper strategy to find a player that will hit the top 10. Wins are great but aren’t likely so I’m satisfied with having a CHANCE to hit the big money. Missed cuts are absolutely the death in this game but even the surest of things don’t always happen in the reality world of fantasy golf. Remember, fade or follow, it’s up to you! I’m going to leave my 2013-14 results up for a few weeks so if you have any questions “mapping” your season, you can learn from my plays from last year.


Those who don’t recall history are condemned to repeat it.



2014-15 Glass OAD


Frys.com: Brooks Koepka. Let’s get this started off on the right foot. Koepka, playing without any status last year, led on Sunday by three shots at the turn. He finished T3 and learned a valuable lesson. His recent form has been scintillating as he has four top 15s in his last four worldwide starts, including the PGA at Valhalla (T15). He was T9 last week at the Dunhill. Koepka, T8, did what was expected and racked up a top 10 for $168,000.


Shriners Open: It came down to Moore, Watney and Piercy for the OAD place this week. Laird was also in the conversation but I’m going with the best putter of the group mentioned above and there’s not a place that Moore HAS TO BE USED later. Sure, he beat Gary Woodland in a playoff last year at CIMB but I don’t use defending champions. #WeakSauce. He shares the tournament record has three top 10s in his last four. More Moore please! ANY SINGLE ONE OF THOSE THREE OTHER THAN MOORE would have been just fine. Moore has wiped me twice in eight events. The good news is I don’t even have to CONSIDER his presence again until October of 2015.


McGladrey Classic: This is the CLASSIC HEDGE MOVE for gamers. I’m going with Kuchar above but Simpson down here to cover my ASSet. Look, save Simpson for Greenbrier, Sedgefield or TPC Boston, but I’m going with a guy who is hot NOW and will find someone else later. HOW COULD THIS GO WRONG, RYAN MOORE??? Nothing like a T41 to back up a MC; $19,600.


CIMB Classic: I’m loading up on Charl Schwartzel since I can’t play him on the Sunshine TOUR at the Dunhill or Joburg. His course form is overwhelming and in a limited field with limited views of this track, his experience and successes here are huge. He’ll probably WD. He couldn’t catch up after his opening round 74; T19, $94,500.


WGC-HSBC Champions: I’ll go with the guy who holds the course record, the 2011 title plus two other top eight finishes in four starts, Martin Kaymer. Did I mention he made 29 birdies here last year? Ok, good. If I was a casual golf fan and just picked up the newspaper on Monday morning to see that Kaymer finished T6 I would have been thrilled…$216,337


Sanderson Farms: It came down to Tony Finau or Hudson Swafford and I went with the Georgia ‘Dawg. Both are hot so I’ll go with the local-er of the two and the better ball-striker. I should be required to take the “Silly Season” off. BOTH missed the cut. I’m ready for 2015…


OHL Classic: Can I just pass? Since I couldn’t pull the trigger on Jason Bohn in the Golf Channel game, I’ll hedge him here with Stroud and Sabbatini right behind him. WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG? I need a vacation. I was gun-shy but the hedge paid off with T7 and $196,275


HTOC: This is a good news/bad news event. The good news is that there are only 34 players and this is a track that requires previous experience. The bad news is if the guy you pick doesn’t finish in the top five it’s a complete waste of time. For the conservative/saver this is THE ONLY WEEK TO PICK Ogilvy since he’s won here twice. For the throw-caution-to-the-wind player, Kuchar, Day or Watson should lead the line. I’ll find myself right in the middle with Chris Kirk. WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG? Kirk needed to tie the course record on Monday to hit six figures. Yeah, that’s all I needed to pocket $110,000, 11 birdies and 62. Day pulled the same trick but he finished T3.


Sony Open: I’m going with the man who has eight top 10s in 13 career starts, Charles Howell III. He’s hit the top five in five of the last six years and I’m not going to find that anywhere else on TOUR. #EasyChoice. Make it top five in five of the last SEVEN years. T26 paid $42,280.


Humana Challenge: Ryan Palmer gets the nod this week as he’s shown form on these tracks and has no problem getting low, yo! He’s a member at Colonial, FYI. The pain. The suffering. The life of a fantasy gamer. If reading from top to bottom it’s easy to see why my pain is prevalent. Shut up. T10 isn’t great but isn’t terrible, $136,000.


WMPO: This week, Hunter Mahan takes the wheel. With his wife due shortly, he knows his time, for the moment, is limited and it’s time to make hay. It doesn’t hurt that his game sets up for most layouts and it doesn’t hurt he won here in 2010 and was T4 last year. I’m not confident pulling the trigger on Watson, Spieth, Fowler or Mickelson just yet. THERE’S NOTHING WORSE than playing defense but these gentlemen are more valuable in majors/WGC than here in the desert. Brendan Steele was the backup plan. Mahan = T30 $36,729 but cashed more $$$ than Phil or Rickie! NOBODY CARES!!!


FIO: I’ve ridden Fowler here the last two years and he responded with T6 and MC so let’s hold off on the ticker tape parade. I’m throwing caution to the wind this week and sending the No. 1 player in the FedExCup to do work. With T2 and WIN in his last two Jimmy Walker is the play this week. I can’t use him next week at Pebble Beach where he is the defending champion (and I had him in OAD!) and his record at Riviera isn’t as strong as it is here. DO WORK, SON! One shot out of the lead entering Sunday resulted in a, for him (and me) a disappointing T7 and $189,787. Yep, that’s how high the bar is now set with him on the California coast.]


Pebble Beach: Day is tempting but if he keeps playing like this he’ll have chances in bigger paydays so he’s out. I’m saving Johnson for his redemption song next week at Riviera so he’s out. Walker was played last week plus he’s the defending champ so that leaves Patrick Reed. Hit it a mile. Find it. Make everything. Win. Kevin Na, Aaron Baddeley or would be a nice fill for a TOAD. Imagine if Reed didn’t close with 67 to finish T29 and pocket $44,200? Wait, it could have been WORSE? Blimey…


NTO: I’m a romantic so Dustin Johnson gets the call this week. His six months on the sideline were spent playing and practicing in his adopted home town and his form at Riviera is better than most.






SEASON TOTAL: $1,253,838; 13 events






Top 10s: 5

Top 25s: 7

MC: 2, Ryan Moore (Shriners), Hudson Swafford (SFC)

Thermometer: People in Boston think I’m hot but that’s it. #weatherjoke




Coming Wednesday


And the analysis doesn't end here. Rotoworld's Rob Bolton and I will be co-hosting a live chat Wednesday at NOON ET.  We will be breaking down the field at the NTO and answering your questions. Simply return to the golf home page to join in on the chatter.



Mike Glasscott
Fantasy Golf columnist Mike Glasscott joined Rotoworld in 2012. He can be contacted via email at RotoworldGlass@gmail.com or on Twitter.