The PGA Course Breakdown offers data-driven analysis for each week’s slate, using the Fantasy Labs Trends Tool and metrics to highlight stats for the upcoming tournament.
The PGA Tour heads to TPC Scottsdale in Arizona for one of my favorite tournaments of the year in the Waste Management Phoenix Open. It’s a pretty strong field and should make for some fun roster construction this week.
Let’s dive in.
As always, I back-tested various metrics in our PGA Models to find out those that have been the most valuable at TPC Scottsdale. Per our Trends tool, here’s how the top 20% of golfers in various metrics have done at this course (in Plus/Minus valuation).
Historically, this course has yielded averages of 52.89 DraftKings points and a +3.97 Plus/Minus with a 55.7% Consistency Rating to the field.
Metrics that tested with at least a +2.00 Plus/Minus:
- Long-Term Eagles: +6.04
- Long-Term Birdies: +5.46
- Long-Term Par-4 Scoring: +5.45
- Recent Driving Distance: +5.27
- Long-Term Par-5 Scoring: +5.13
- Long-Term Greens In Regulation: +4.38
- Long-Term Missed Cuts: +4.19
- Recent Birdies: +3.49
- Recent Adjusted Round Score: +3.03
- Recent Par-5 Scoring: +2.98
- Long-Term Driving Distance: +2.76
- Recent Scrambling: +2.66
- Long-Term Adjusted Round Score: +2.03
- Long-Term Par-3 Scoring: +2.03
- Long-Term Scrambling: +2.02
TPC Scottsdale is a par 71, 7,261-yard course featuring three reachable par 5s, so it makes sense to see eagle scoring ranking as the top metrics when I did the back-testing. Per Fantasy National, all three par 5s have eagle rates above 2% and birdie rates ranging from 36-45%.
Targeting golfers who are strong par-5 scorers should be a priority this week. Additionally, keying in on golfers with who have eagle potential is one of the best ways to get some upside into your lineup. Scottie Scheffler and Jon Rahm are good examples of this. Scheffler has averaged 1.2 eagles per tournament over the last 75 weeks, per our Player Models.
The only hole with a birdie rate that comes close to the par 5s is the short, drivable No. 17 par 4, which has historically had an eagle rate of 1.4% and a birdie rate of 38%. This gives a slight edge to some of the bombers that decide to aggressively go for the green.
Short hitters have shown success here, but I’ll lean toward golfers who are reasonably long and can gain strokes off the tee. Strokes Gained: Approach and Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee are two of the metrics I’ll favor heavily this week.
One of the players who come to mind as an excellent course fit is Viktor Hovland. He’s hit 71.6% of greens in regulation (GIR) and 71.1% of fairways over the last 75 weeks while averaging just over 300 yards off the tee. Furthermore, he’s averaged -1.4 and -5.5 adjusted strokes on par 4s and 5s over the same time frame.
His Strokes Gained metrics look just as good, ranking fist in Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee and fifth in Strokes Gained: Approach over his last 50 rounds, per Fantasy National.
Key metrics: Birdie or better scoring, par-4 and par-5 scoring, Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee, Strokes Gained: Approach.
And as usual, I like Long-Term (LT) and Recent Adjusted Round Scores (Adj Rd Score) as catch-all metrics.
Pictured above: Viktor Hovland
Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images