The PGA Tour takes a breather from the elevated events as it heads to Innisbrook for the Valspar Championship.
Non-elevated events mean less big names and buzz for the tournament. But there are still intriguing storylines and some familiar faces in play this weekend.
Akshay Bhatia is a 21-year-old who just gained special temporary exemption on the Tour. Basically it means he’s played well enough lately to get into Tour events but needs to keep doing good to get his actual Tour card.
But Bhatia was dominant as an amateur golfer and took a different path than most of his peers. Instead of going to college, Bhatia tried to make the Korn Ferry Tour straight out of high school.
He won the opener for the minor league tour last year but failed to play well enough to earn his Tour card the rest of the season. He’s hard to miss on the golf course as he’s tall, skinny as a twig and is left-handed. Keep an eye on the kid this weekend.
Here are our odds picks for the weekend.
Jordan Spieth +1200 – The co-favorite along with Justin Thomas – did you know they were good friends? – Spieth has won here before back in 2015. He has two top tens in his last four starts. Spieth is always a roller coaster to watch, but if his putter gets hot, look out.
Tommy Fleetwood +2200 – The Englishman was looking pretty good last week at the Players until he shot a four-over final round. It’s crazy as good as Fleetwood is that he’s never won on the PGA Tour. He’s only played Innisbrook once, last year where he finished 16th.
Justin Suh +3500 – The winner of the Korn Ferry Tour last year, Suh has been impressive in his rookie campaign on the big boy tour. He’s played the last three weeks finishing T5, T24, and T6, not bad. He’s 12th on tour in proximity to the hole and has been above average in putting. Two ingredients to shoot low.
Brandon Wu +5000 – Another young one who has played well of late. T14 at the Honda Classic and T19 last week at the Players. He finished 33rd at this event last season. Has been good off-the-tee this year but once he closes in on the green, things start to get rough.
Pierceson Coody +11000 – Fresh out of college and looking to earn his full-time Tour card, Coody has only played in two events this year. But one of them was the Arnold Palmer where he finished T14. This kid was a star at Texas and golf is in the family genes. His grandfather won the Masters way back in the day.
DFS Lineup of the Week (FanDuel):
Ryan Gerard $8,500
Ludvig Aberg $8,800
Brandon Wu $10,000
Justin Suh $10,400
Denny McCarthy $10,800
Tommy Fleetwood $11,000
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Photo Credit: © David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports