Grab whatever green clothing items you own and wear them every single freakin’ day because it’s Masters week! Golf geeks around the globe are ready for a second dance with Augusta in less than six months. After DJ’s dominating performance back in November, reports indicate that we should expect different (and much more difficult) course conditions. So, as you prepare for the “Tradition unlike any other”, it’s time to make some predictions at The Wife Hates Sports! Let’s start with my seven favorite PGA DFS 2021 Masters picks, including my predicted winner at Augusta National.
Before I present this week’s picks, a few additional notes:
- SG: Tee to Green, SG: Approach and Ball Striking are key categories to focus on at Augusta National
- Course history is a big focus area, as newbies almost never make a major impact
- At The Masters, keep an eye on strokes gained on the Par 5’s, especially considering a player’s performance on both 13 and 15 is often pivotal to making a run
- I also like Three Putt Avoidance, considering getting the jitters in this event is a common occurrence. You could keep an eye on numbers around putting on faster greens, too.
- The weather forecast is set to feature temps in the low-to-mid 80’s throughout the tournament, with significant chances for thunderstorms on both Friday and Saturday. How much rain (and when) will obviously impact how the course plays as the week progresses
- If you like to consider pairings, here is the current list of starting times for the opening two rounds of the tournament, as presented on Twitter by the PGA TOUR Communications account:
— PGA TOUR Communications (@PGATOURComms) April 6, 2021
I ran multiple models on Fantasy National and checked key stats via the PGA TOUR website. The range of data I analyzed includes recent events, history at Augusta and detail for the 2021 PGA TOUR season. Based off that data, here are my picks and predictions for the week at Augusta National. Included with the picks are each player’s DK price and current odds to win via DraftKings Sportsbook:
PGA DFS 2021 Masters: Favorite Plays and Pick to Win
Before I dive into my favorite plays (and pick to win the 2021 Masters), I’d like to start with the following stat via PGATOUR.com, outlining the last players to win back-to-back tournaments:
- Brendon Todd – 2020 Bermuda Championship and 2020 Mayakoba Golf Classic
- Bryson DeChambeau – 2018 THE NORTHERN TRUST and 2018 Dell Technologies Championship
- Justin Thomas – 2017 SBS Tournament of Champions and 2017 Sony Open in Hawaii
- Jason Day – 2016 Arnold Palmer Invitational and 2016 WGC-Dell Match Play
- Adam Scott – 2016 Honda Classic and 2016 WGC-Cadillac Championship
- Billy Horschel – 2014 BMW Championship and 2014 TOUR Championship
- Rory McIlroy – 2014 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and 2014 PGA Championship
The simple translation is that this can happen on occasion, but winning two straight golf tournaments is a rare occurrence. That, for me, would knock out Justin Thomas (last played was a win), Dustin Johnson (last Masters was a win) and Jordan Spieth (won last week). All could have strong showings, but don’t expect them to wear a green jacket by the end of the week.
Outside the above logical-perhaps-illogical semi-fades, here are my favorite SEVEN (a SEXY SEVEN, if you will) plays this week, along with my pick to win the 2021 Masters. Yes, this covers the key price ranges on DraftKings, with the exception being my 6K range sleepers (outlined in a separate post):
Joaquin Niemann (DK: $7,400, +6600)
Niemann has been steady this season. He is 11th in SG: Tee to Green (2021), 7th in Driving Distance (last 36 rounds), 10th in GIR Gained (2021), 12th in SG: Approach (last 36 rounds) and 6th in SG: Ball Striking (last 36 rounds). His recent form at Augusta National includes a missed cut in 2018, so that’s a question mark. Still, he’s just so talented, so you can’t count him out, especially at this price.
Will Zalatoris (DK: $7,300, +6600)
Yes, I realize the newbies to Augusta rarely have success. Zalatoris is just a different beast and he really pops on the models I ran. That’s why I’m including him here, because if any first-timer is going to have success at The Masters, it’s him. To add statistical backing, Zalatoris is 3rd in the field in SG: Tee to Green (2021 season), 9th in Driving Distance, 4th in GIR Gained (2021 season), 4th in SG: Approach (last 36 rounds) and 4th in SG: Ball Striking (last 36 rounds). Enough said.
Cameron Smith (DK: $8,200, +10000)
Chalk haters avoid! Smith is sure to be highly owned in DFS lineups, but you can’t argue the numbers. That includes recent form at The Masters, including a T2 back in November and a T5 finish in 2018. He also has two recent Top 20 finishes, including a T17 at THE PLAYERS and a T11 at the WGC-Mexico. He is 2nd in the field in strokes gained on the Par 5’s (2021) and 9th in Three Putt Avoidance (last 36 rounds). His numbers on approach, ball striking and SG: Tee to Green are also solid across the board.
Lee Westwood (DK: $8,800, +8000)
Maybe I’m just a sucker for storylines. The 47 year-old Westwood now has his future better half on the bag (a wife that does not hate sports). It has certainly kept him loose and upbeat in recent events. Statistically, the model numbers don’t pop, but here I am listing Westwood. Why is that? Well, two recent runner-up finishes help. Additionally, look at his Masters record from 2007-2020: T30, T11, 43, 2, T11, T3, T8, 7, T46, T2, T18, X, X and T38. That’s seven finishes of T11 or better in 12 tournaments played. Insanity! With the recent form, how can you not consider taking a chance on him?
Tony Finau (DK: $9,100, +3300)
Finau gets a pass from November’s finish, because I used him as my OAD pick (with Dustin Johnson as my alternate selection – of course). Despite the T38 in the last Masters, Tony has a T5 in 2019 and a T10 in 2018. That also includes his bizarre Par 3 Tournament injury celebration. Finau’s game fits Augusta and he’s due for a big win. Toss in the fact that he’s 5th in SG: Tee to Green (2021) and 6th in SG: Approach (last 36 rounds), it’s very clear that Finau is an intriguing statistical option.
Webb Simpson (DK: $9,000, +2500)
Often slipping under the radar among the top names, Webb has a steady history at Augusta. That includes a T10 in November, a T5 in 2019 and a T20 in 2018. He is also 11th in the field in Three Putt Avoidance (last 36 rounds) and 24th in SG: Tee to Green (2021 season). His price is low enough and his ownership might be, too… especially if people gravitate towards Spieth and a returning Brooks Koepka.
KP’s Pick to Win: Bryson DeChambeau (DK: $10,800, +1400)
Bryson might be sliding a bit under the radar (if that’s possible). Most people are likely looking at course history, which is a big indicator. Bryson’s recent stretch at Augusta is as follows: T34, T29, T38 and T21 (with the T21 in 2016 and no result in 2017). Nothing in the Top 20 has to be the reason why people could shy away, but let’s consider the game. Augusta National can (and does) favor long hitters and, well… we know Bryson is exactly that. He also has the putting stroke and can get hot on the greens. “Drive for show, putt for dough”, as they say. Overall, DeChambeau is 1st in SG: Tee to Green for the 2021 season and cracks the top ten in SG: Ball Striking over the last 36 rounds. He is also fifth in strokes gained on the Par 5’s, a key stat considering the key holes on the back nine that can win The Masters.
Bryson is a very cerebral guy and in the end, I think he learned from the mistakes he made in November. Adjusting to that and riding a hot streak that includes a T3 at THE PLAYERS and a win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, and I believe Bryson DeChambeau will claim his second major and wear the green jacket by the end of the weekend.
Who do you have as your PGA DFS 2021 Masters winner? Chime in with your favorite plays below. Either that or stop by to praise or poke fun at mine.
Best of luck and as always, thank you for visiting The Wife Hates Sports!
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