The Memorial Tournament: 15 DFS Golf Picks
DFS Golf Picks: the Memorial Tournament
Make the most of the data, predictions, and insights from this article to help with your fantasy golf picks for the Memorial Tournament, and check out our PGA Optimizer to make more educated player selections for your DFS lineups. Best of luck to you!
the Memorial Tournament
Preview for the Memorial Tournament: Jack Nicklaus founded this tournament in 1976 and it has been contested at Muirfield Village Golf Club ever since. We have a great field on tap this week - it will be interesting to see if the record score currently at -20 and held by Tom Lehman can be topped from 1994 when he beat Greg Normal by 5 strokes as we have a very strong field this year thanks to the big prize money being offered up. Winners of the Memorial Tournament over the last five years include Patrick Cantlay in 2021, Jon Rahm in 2020, Patrick Cantlay in 2019, Bryson DeChambeau in 2018, and Jason Dufner in 2017.
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Tournament purse: The prize money for this week's event is $12M, the winner collects $2.16M and also earns himself 550 FedEx Cup points.
Course and key stats: Muirfield Village Golf Club is 7,533 yards in length, is a par 72, and the small greens are a hybrid mix of bentgrass and poa annua. The winning score at this tournament over the last decade ranges from -9 to -19, so this track can play tough in certain years. Some core key stats to focus on this week, in order, are strokes gained: around the green, strokes gained: tee to green, strokes gained: approach, driving accuracy percentage, and strokes gained: off the tee.
The field: We got another smallish field on tap this week with 120 golfers in action - the top 65 players plus ties after round 2 will move on to play rounds 3 and 4. We have a ton of talent teeing it up this week including the defending champ, Patrick Cantlay, Jon Rahm, Collin Morikawa, Cam Smith, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, and lots of other big names, as well. On a scale ranging from A to D, I rank the field strength to be a B+.
Three questions I have about the Memorial Tournament:
1. Will another big gunner win again? Patrick Cantlay has won here twice out of the last three years, Jon Rahm won in 2020, Bryson DeChambeau won in 2018, Tiger Woods has won here an incredible five times, and lots of big names have won Jack Nicklaus' tournament over the years. It's a really strong field, so I expect an elite golfer to hoist the trophy this week - be sure to grab as much of the win equity at the top of the board as you can.
2. Who are the 10 best around the green players over the last 24 rounds? Around the green is the most polarizing key stat in order to succeed at Muirfield Village, the top 10 players in this category over the last 24 rounds are Matt Kuchar, Danny Willett, Jordan Spieth, Cameron Young, Rory McIlroy, Chris Kirk, Pat Perez, Lucas Herbert, Matt Fitzpatrick, and Francesco Molinari.
3. Which 10 players have gained the most strokes total here over the last five years? The 10 top stroke gainers here over the last half-decade are Jon Rahm (9 rounds), Ryan Palmer (4 rounds), Patrick Cantlay (20 rounds), Collin Morikawa (8 rounds), Adam Scott (16 rounds), Rickie Fowler (18 rounds), Harris English (4 rounds), Jordan Spieth (18 rounds), Matt Kuchar (14 rounds), and Kevin Streelman (20 rounds).
DraftKings lineup construction strategy this week: We don't have a full field again this week, so you may want to get a bit more aggressive with your stars and scrub and hybrid lineups this week. Pay close attention to projected ownership numbers on Wednesday and pivot where reasonable towards lower owned golfers, and be sure to leave a few hundred bucks on the table for the large GPPs for originality purposes.
All the best in your journey to win or at least be in the money in some contests this week - here are my 15 DFS golf picks which feature my top 3 players from each tier on DraftKings (DK) in no particular order, plus I include player salaries for DK, as well. I consistently provide recent and seasonal finishes for each of my picks, their performances at the event over the last 5 years, and add in some tasty pieces of information, also.
The $10K+ Range
Jon Rahm (Salary: DraftKings - $11.1K) - Rahm was well on his way to winning last year before having to withdraw after his COVID-19 results came back positive. He and Cantlay have won this tournament over the last three years, and I wouldn't be surprised if that trend continues for a fourth year this week. He won two starts ago at the Mexico Open, is statistically solid, finishes well almost every time he plays, and has been outstanding at Muirfield Village - what's not to like?! Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - WD, 2020 - Won, and 2017 - Cut.
Patrick Cantlay (Salary: DraftKings - $10.7K) - He likely feels like he didn't fully deserve the win here last year as Rahm was cruising to his second straight win before the virus stole it from him, so Cantlay could have something to prove this week. He has two wins here over the last three years, he won the Zurich Classic with his buddy Schauffele below in his most recent start, and has two top 2's over his last three starts. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - Won, 2020 - T32, 2019 - Won, 2018 - T4, and 2017 - T35.
Xander Schauffele (Salary: DraftKings - $10.2K) - Schauffele consistently finishes well and his past three starts have been particularly impressive with a win at the Zurich Classic, a T5 at the Byron Nelson, and a 13th at the PGA Championship two weeks ago where he gained 7.27 strokes ball-striking. He has finished anywhere from T11 to T14 here over the last three years, and I expect something similar or better this week. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T11, 2020 - T13, 2019 - T14, and 2018 - Cut.
The $9K Range
Jordan Spieth (Salary: DraftKings - $9.7K) - He finished T7 last week at the Charles Schwab Challenge but it could have been much better had he not had three straight bogeys to finish his final round. Nonetheless, he still has three top 7's over his last four starts including winning the RBC Heritage in April, and he has been incredibly strong with his ball-striking and around the green play during that stretch. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T18, 2020 - T13, 2019 - T7, 2018 - Cut, and 2017 - T13.
Shane Lowry (Salary: DraftKings - $9.0K) - Between the PGA Tour, European Tour, and Asian Tour, Lowry's worst finish is T24 in stroke play since last November! His stats are a joy to look at since he plays a complete game, and his finishes are consistently strong as a result. I won't be surprised at all if he finishes top 10 just like last year when he had a T6 thanks to gaining strokes across the board. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T6, 2020 - Cut, 2018 - T52, and 2017 - T15.
Cameron Smith (Salary: DraftKings - $9.9K) - Smith already has two wins in 2022 - at THE PLAYERS Championship and at the Tournament of Champions - both strong fields. He had a 13th in his most recent start at the PGA Championship thanks to gaining 9.66 strokes on approach and 12.46 ball-striking. For whatever reason, he has been poor here but don't expect that this time around as his career is on a huge upward trajectory now after that massive PLAYERS victory. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - Cut, 2020 - T68, 2019 - Cut, 2018 - Cut, and 2017 - T65.
The $8K Range
Cameron Young (Salary: DraftKings - $8.8K) - He's on a power trip now with a T3 at the RBC Heritage, a T2 at the Wells Fargo Championship, and a 3rd at the PGA Championship. He has gained almost 30 strokes ball-striking over those last three starts and over 8 strokes around the green, so it seems as though he's a can't miss option again this week. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: None.
Davis Riley (Salary: DraftKings - $8.6K) - Here's another young stud who's gunning for his first PGA Tour win - five straight top 13's and three of them are top 9's if you include the Zurich Classic. His ball-striking and putting have been incredible lately, and much like Young above, he should make a heck of a Memorial debut this week. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: None.
Mito Pereira (Salary: DraftKings - $8.0K) - Between Young, Riley, and Pereira, you can build outstanding balanced lineups this week featuring these three studs. After his 3rd at the PGA Championship, he finished T7 last week, and has eight top 30's in his last ten starts on the back of incredible ball-striking and better than average around the green play. He should keep the momentum going this week despite being a rookie at this event. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: None.
The $7K Range
Patrick Reed (Salary: DraftKings - $7.9K) - I didn't expect to get back on Reed this quickly, but he had a T7 last week after gaining strokes across the board, and that almost makes it two straight starts for him except for a 2.73 strokes loss off the tee at the PGA Championship. He has two consecutive top 10's here and his stats have been really good - I won't be surprised if he adds another top 10 again this week. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T5, 2020 - T10, 2018 - T29, and 2017 - T57.
Chris Kirk (Salary: DraftKings - $7.7K) - I really like that Kirk almost always gains strokes on ball-striking and around the green, and he has gained strokes across the board over his last two starts with a 5th at the PGA Championship and a T15 last week. He hasn't torn the monkey up at this venue, but I expect a result better than his T26 from last year. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T26, 2018 - T52, and 2017 - Cut.
Adam Scott (Salary: DraftKings - $7.7K) - Scott has put up a bunch of great finishes at this tournament including his 2nd three years ago when he gained an insane 14.39 strokes ball-striking and was solid in every stat category. He has four top 10's so far this year between the PGA Tour and the European Tour, and I expect a nice bounce back from his missed cut at the PGA Championship two weeks ago. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T16, 2019 - 2nd, 2018 - T35, and 2017 - T31.
The $6K Range
Patrick Rodgers (Salary: DraftKings - $6.8K) - When you get a $12M prize pool there is bound to be a solid and deep field and that's certainly the case this week with even a bunch of the scrubs having appeal. Rodgers has four straight top 35's if you count the Zurich Classic, and he had a 10th at the Mexico Open where his off the tee game and putting were fabulous. He missed the cut here a year ago, but had a T18 in 2020 and a T8 in 2018, so he absolutely has top 20 potential this week. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - Cut, 2020 - T18, 2018 - T8, and 2017 - T67.
David Lipsky (Salary: DraftKings - $6.7K) - Lipsky has had a good 2022 so far with three top 7's in his last seven starts if you count the Zurich Classic, and he gained 11.76 strokes ball-striking at the Mexico Open to finish T6. His stats are a bit spotty, so it's hard to know exactly what you're investing in with David, but he should make the cut and has decent upside. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2019 - T48.
Brendan Steele (Salary: DraftKings - $6.6K) - I believe he's under priced this week as he's coming off a 9th at the PGA Championship and has four top 26's in his last six starts if you count the Zurich Classic with no missed cuts during that span. Add to it that he has finished T13 to T57 here over his last four looks at Muirfield Village, and he looks like an ideal scrub to add to your best stars and scrub and hybrid lineups. Memorial Tournament finishes over the last five years: 2021 - T37, 2020 - T13, 2019 - T41, and 2017 - T57.
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Jeremy has been playing fantasy sports for over 20 successful years, and actively plays golf, hockey, baseball, and table tennis. He has over three years of fantasy sports writing experience - including writing a daily fantasy sports strategies and tools eBook in 2016. He is an active member of DraftKings - specializing in NHL and PGA contests over the past 5 years. He enjoys spending time with his family, traveling to hot places in the frigid Canadian Winters, binge-watching on Netflix, and starting and managing digital businesses.