Playing the Tips

Our Picks: Zurich Classic

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 We’ll have all of our selections from the, Yahoo! Fantasy Golf, my weekly selection for One-and-Done players plus DFS love from Josh Culp and European Tour insight from Dave Tindall. Fantasy Golf



Zurich Classic







2015 Earnings: $8,940,064

2015 Rank: 9,441


Score one for the course historians last week if they decided to go with the all-time money leader at the RBC Heritage, Jim Furyk. I bombed out with Reed who broke a 16-event streak of playing the weekend. I took a chance. It didn’t work and as I said last week, the form of Kuchar-Furyk-Donald “scared me off”. I guess they scared me like Mickelson and Spieth did at the Masters. HOW DID THAT TURN OUT??? The rest of my squad did exactly what would have been expected as they all finished inside the top 31. Gamers who blindly plugged in Spieth were rewarded with T11 even after an opening 74. Man, he’s quite good. Imagine when he gets back from a few weeks off!



Group 1: Dustin Johnson

Group 2: Morgan Hoffmann

Group 3: John Peterson

Group 4: Will Wilcox



ANALYSIS: The hole has been dug so I’m throwing caution to the wind. Johnson has been nothing but solid since his return and a course like this he should tear apart. Rose was the obvious second choice. Group 2 could take all day and I would not talk anyone out of Berger or Thomas either. I’m going completely against the grain in Group 3 as Peterson has remarked on Twitter that he doesn’t like events where it takes a million birdies to win. TAKE THAT DAWG.  I bet Merritt gets some action this week here as well. Toms is the safest play if that’s an angle needed. Wilcox edges Adams and Garnett in the final group.




Rob Bolton





2015 Earnings: $12,492,608

2015 Rank: 549



Group 1: Justin Rose

Group 2: Brendan Steele

Group 3: Sean O’Hair

Group 4: Will Wilcox



ANALYSIS: Quiet week for all four of us at HHI as T11 was the best of our 16 picks. Bolton fires back with Rose after his Masters performance and violates his own “never pick against DJ” rule in this game. He’s taking tried and true veterans the middle and has joined me on Ol’ Yellow Balls in Group 4.




Ryan O’ Sullivan





2015 Earnings: $16,046,653

2015 Rank: 4th



Group 1: Dustin Johnson

Group 2: Harris English

Group 3: John Peterson

Group 4: Lucas Glover



ANALYSIS: He maintains his top-five status with Spieth salvaging his squad last week. We match the odds and he uses a pair of recent course horses in the evens.




Ned Brown





2015 Earnings: $11,577,181

2015 Rank: 1,359



Group 1: Dustin Johnson

Group 2: Brendan Steele

Group 3: Sean O’Hair

Group 4: Jeff Overton



ANALYSIS: A true mix-and-match of the above until going with Overton in Group 4 as the only non-winner in the four.   



Event No. 2 Swinging Skirts LPGA




Group 1: Stacy Lewis

Group 2: Hyo-Joo Kim

Group 3: Brittany Lang

Group 4: Ai Miyazato





Group 1: Stacy Lewis

Group 2: Hyo-Joo Kim

Group 3: Ariya Jutanugarn

Group 4: Alison Walshe





Group 1: Stacy Lewis

Group 2: Cristie Kerr

Group 3: Morgan Pressel

Group 4: Ai Miyazato





Group 1: Stacy Lewis

Group 2: Hyo-Joo Kim

Group 3: Morgan Pressel

Group 4: Alison Lee



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”


Points – RBC Heritage: 144

Points – SPRING Segment: 482

Rank – SPRING Segment: 16,035


Points – SEASON: 2,442

Rank – SEASON: 1,376




Group A


Yahoo! starts remaining in (   )


Harris English (10): There are only four players in Group A this week and at the top of the list is English. He has two top 10s (T2, FIO; T10, Valspar) in his last six starts. His best finish here was last time out in '13 when he T6.


Steve Stricker (10): His first event of the year was the Masters where he finished a very respectable T28. Normally, I’d let Stricker get a few starts under him but the other choice is Noh and his form has been rotten.





Seung-Yul Noh



Group B


Dustin Johnson (5): With top 6s in five of his last starts, which includes a championship at the WGC-Cadillac, there’s no way I can leave him out. His history at the Zurich is really not helpful as he’s only played once (MC, 2008).


Jason Day (5): He played well at the start of '15 with a FIO championship. Recently he has just played ok with a lackluster T28 at the Masters. In a field this thin, he’s worth the play this week.


Justin Rose (9): He returned to form at the Masters where he finished T2. Unlike Johnson and Day, Rose has a long history at this event with three top 10s in nine career starts that includes last year’s T8.


Rickie Fowler (8): He started slowly but recently has come on with T12 at WGC-Cadillac and T12 at the Masters. He has one top 10 in four starts here (T10 in '12).





Billy Horschel, Kevin Kisner, Nick Watney, Cameron Tringale



Group C



Brendan Steele (9): There are quite a few players that are worthy of starts this week in Group C. Steele, who has been playing some very consistent golf recently, qualifies with three top 14s in his last five starts.


Keegan Bradley (7): His play recently has been good with a T5 API and T22 at the Masters. He has played in the last four Zurich Classics with his first top 10 coming last year when he T8.





Morgan Hoffmann, Brendon de Jonge, Sean O'Hair




Ryan O’Sullivan (O)



The Golf Aficionado”



Points – RBC Heritage: 110

Points – SPRING Segment: 490

Rank – SPRING Segment: 13,540


Points – SEASON: 2,683

Rank – SEASON: 149



Group A:



Harris English (10)

Steve Stricker (10)



Group B:


Jason Day (6)

Dustin Johnson (6)

Billy Horschel (10)

Justin Rose (9)



Group C:


Keegan Bradley (7)

Justin Thomas (8)




Rob Bolton






Points – RBC Heritage: 142

Points – SPRING Segment: 482

Rank – SPRING Segment: 15,803


Points – SEASON: 2,530

Rank – SEASON: 3,182




Group A:


Steve Stricker (10)

Harris English (10)



Group B:


Rickie Fowler (9)

Dustin Johnson (8)

Justin Rose (8)

Nick Watney (8)



Group C:


Keegan Bradley (7)

Brendan Steele (7)










Points – RBC Heritage: 128

Points – SPRING Segment: 440

Rank – SPRING Segment: 30,911


Points – SEASON: 2,498

Rank – SEASON: 4,612



No point of having Furyk in Group A if you’re not going to play him! Oh, wait. That was me. C’est la vie. My job is to give you the picks to start the week and you can figure out how to time the market.



Group A



Harris English (10)

Steve Stricker (10)



There are only four dudes in A this week. Marc Warren hasn’t missed a cut in three tries. Stricker hasn’t missed in 36. Noh is the defending champ but he hasn’t put a round in the 60s in his last five events.  He’s missed the weekend in three of those five to no surprise.



Group B



Dustin Johnson (5)

Daniel Berger (9)

Cameron Tringale (9)

Justin Rose (10)



Plenty of angles of attack in this group and I’ve gone with a few. Rose is the course-horse, world stud; Johnson is second hottest player on TOUR behind Spieth. Tringale and Berger would make perfect sense in the first-timers club. Fowler and Day (6 starts) were tempting but I’m so far behind, I’ll gladly take some chances. Day’s final three rounds at the Masters were just disturbing enough that I’ll burn him somewhere else.



Group C



Justin Thomas (10)

Morgan Hoffmann (10)



These two youngsters have shown they can get low and both have serious pedigree on their side. Bradley and Steele/Knox should be the choices if risk aversion is the plan.




Daily Fantasy Sports [DFS]



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


Josh has compiled the recommended roster below for this week's $3 Birdie contest on DraftKings. Mix and match the golfers below to test your skills turning three dollars into a potential $10,000. Draft your entry now:



DraftKings Picks



Billy Horschel ($10,400) ... He returns to the site of his first PGA TOUR win, it's the perfect venue for the defending FedExCup champ to get back in the winner's circle. Let's not bank on a win, but a top 25 is certainly a high possibility.


Troy Merritt ($8,000) ... My first instinct said he was overpriced, but that also means his ownership will stay low which is great for GPPs. He found himself in contention last week and has a solo third on his Zurich resume. Not a bad combination.


Cameron Tringale ($8,400) ... Top 30s in four of his five Zurich starts. Other than last week's missed cut, his form shows promise as well. Before last week he had seven straight top 50s. His course history here may be the spark that pushes him over the edge and finally into the winner's circle.


Charles Howell III ($8,600) ... Had an uncharacteristic hiccup at last week's Heritage. I look for him to get right back on the horse at TPC Louisiana, a venue where he is 6-for-7 including a runner-up finish in 2009.


Jeff Overton ($6,600) ... A course stallion that shines against weaker fields. He's collected top 25s in four of his nine Zurich starts.


George McNeill ($7,300) ... He's not going to win any awards for flair, but he's steady and sometimes that is all it takes. He is 9-for-12 on the season and 6-for-8 at Zurich. Slow and steady wins the race.



Other Picks to Consider


Alternate for Howell III: John Peterson ($8,900) ... Could easily be placed into this lineup with confidence. He played at LSU and knows the area well. It would mean a lot for him to grab his first PGA TOUR title at this venue.


Alternate for Merritt: Justin Thomas ($8,300) ... It's really just a matter of time before he knocks out that first TOUR win. This course seemingly suits his length and has a tendency to cater to first timers.


Alternate for McNeill: Will Wilcox ($7,200) ... McNeill is not an attractive option for many gamers. Kind of ho-hum if you ask me. Instead, you could opt for Wilcox who crushes par 5s and has top 35s in his last four starts leading up to this week.




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






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


After the Masters windfall it was important to keep the momentum and we did that with a steady rise of 306 spots thanks to Kiradech Aphibarnrat’s win in Shenzhen. Frustrating to get 0pts from star pick Byeong-Hung An who was right up there after R1 before pulling out with a neck injury.


Current position: 1,294



This week


Team Tindall (Team name: YESSIR!)



Gregory Bourdy

Emiliano Grillo

Pablo Larrazabal

Tom Lewis

Wade Ormsby

Julien Quesne

Richie Ramsay

Anthony Wall

Chris Wood       


Star Player: Tommy Fleetwood


Just missed a playoff last week, hitting lots of greens and has excellent record in China



The Rest



•       Gregory Bourdy: Closing 66 at Shenzhen (T15) sets up him perfectly for course that should suit

•       Emiliano Grillo: Strong in China and straight hitting points to a big week. Close to star player status

•       Pablo Larrazabal: Had a big run at the title last week before stumbling but should be back on it here

•       Tom Lewis: Strong greens in regulation numbers in recent weeks. Helped him to a T4 in Shenzhen

•       Wade Ormsby: Four top 11 finishes in last five starts and, unlike most, has a bit of course form too

•       Julien Quesne: Plenty of good form in China and showed it again with a T4 last week after R4 65

•       Richie Ramsay: Reliable in this part of the world and followed up Morocco win with T11 at Shenzhen

•       Anthony Wall: Rejuvenated veteran has four top 15s in last five starts and course form too

•       Chris Wood: Strong final 54 holes at Shenzhen and T3 in Morocco before that. Strong DA stats






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. 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. He lost in a playoff to James Hahn. That sums up my career in OAD. P2 $589,600. I liked when he was solo second last year when I had him…#MOARMONEY


Honda: I’m going to keep the big hitter motif going this week as I sent Keegan Bradley to bat. I’m looking to grab a guy who’s hot and has course form and he checks both boxes. Dead-beat MC. Wow. #NaeDollars


WGC-CC: There’s no point for me to start “saving” anybody for anything as this season is slowly slipping away. Plus, this is a WGC and the prize pool is only bigger in a couple events (PLAYERS/Open Championship). Bubba Watson is being sent out to stop the bleeding. Go on son! Bring the General Lee if necessary! HELP ME BUBBA! Other considerations would include Day (any event) or McIlroy (any event) and for TOADYS, I’m not sure how I’d talk anyone out of Jamie Donaldson. Watson finished solo third for $540,000. WHO TOLD HIM ON THE BACK NINE THAT I HAD HIM IN OAD?


PRO: I’ll give Overton a chance to keep up the heat on a track where he’s had success in the recent past. T27; $18,736.


Valspar: Time to strike while the iron is hot with Luke Donald. His four trips around here have been quite tight.  He’ll be happy to be inland this week and he’ll also be happy to see a yardage book with familiar marks on it. I’m not sure he has a better course history anywhere else and that’s been his calling card the last two years: course form. Well that streak of course form is over; T53, $13,468.


API: Orlando residents Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell or Henrik Stenson work this week. Kevin Na is also a tasty angle if he’s still available. Since Match Play is all jacked up different this year, this will be the spot I burn Poults. Hopefully he bought another Ferrari this week and feels he needs to pay for it immediately…Poulter opened with 67 and got worse from there with 70-71-72 to close and watch the field lap him on the weekend. T21 for $59,141. The only way I’ll accept this is Stenson winning when I finally pull the trigger on him.


Valero: Laird gets the call this week as I’ll gladly save the heavy hitters for down the road. The list of winners here is odd so it’s not the week to burn a big name. The winner last week wasn’t odd but he wasn’t available for me anyhow. Laird has finally burned out as his T50 for $14,838 feels just like a MC.


SHO: I’m not one of those weirdos who selects the defending champ once a year so I’m playing J.B. Holmes this week instead of saving him for Quail Hollow. I don’t love that he’s coming off a MC his last time out but his numbers at GCH are very nice. I hope the course is soaking wet and long as it can play. BINGO. BANGO. BONGO. First oversized check of the year!


Masters: Mickelson was a tempting choice this week as was the blazing hot Spieth but I’m going to load up on Jason Day for the second consecutive year. Except this year he’s not hurt. I’ve played Watson, DJ, Walker already on courses where they have excelled in the past and have had decent success. Day fits that bill this week. Please read the first sentence over and over and over and over and over and over again. I’m wondering how I left Rose out! Day opened with 67 and faded away to T28 and $68,000 while the first two names on the team sheet made $880,000 and $1.8 million respectively. All I can do is laugh. Again.


RBC Heritage: Since I can’t see the forest from the trees, Charley Hoffman gets the ball this week. His current form is excellent and he has plenty of scar tissue at this even that can help him down the stretch. If Spieth wins… HEY AT LEAST SPIETH DIDN’T WIN LAST WEEK!!! And neither did Goldilocks; and neither did I. Twhocares and $12,054


Zurich: With six of the last nine at TPC Louisiana going to a first-timer, I’m going with youthful exuberance in Morgan Hoffmann. Other considerations were Berger and Thomas.  






SEASON TOTAL: $3,166,529; 23 events


Wins: Holmes, SHO

Seconds: Johnson, P2, NTO

Thirds: Watson, solo, WGC-CC


Top 10s: 8

Top 25s: 11

T53: 1, Donald on a course where he’s never finished worse than 6th.

MC: 3, Moore (Shriners), Swafford (SFC) & Bradley (Honda)

Thermometer: It’s quite sad when a calculator isn’t necessary to add up this week’s total…




Coming Wednesday


And the analysis doesn't end here. Rotoworld's Rob Bolton and I will be co-hosting a live chat Wednesday at 12 ET.  We will be breaking down the field at the Zurich Classic and answering your questions. Simply return to the golf home page to join in on the chatter.


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