John McNamara

Long-Term 101

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Long-Term 101, Volume Five

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Since Volume Four, six tournaments have gone into the books.


Ernie Els won the Open Championship; Scott Stallings captured his second PGA TOUR title at the True South Classic; Scott Piercy triumphed at the RBC Canadian Open; Keegan Bradley overtook Jim Furyk for the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational; J.J. Henry got in the winner’s circle again at the Reno-Tahoe Open; Rory McIlroy won his second major at the PGA Championship; and Sergio Garcia won the Wyndham Championship.


The purpose of the Long-Term 101 is to highlight the fantasy value over a 365-day period instead of a weekly synopsis. This yearlong cheat sheet uses top finishes (money) and quality of play as measurements for the rises and falls within the different volumes.


We are shifting gears a bit for Volume Five. This column will focus on the FedExCup Playoffs, and I have pre-ranked all 125 players going into the postseason.


These rankings will benefit leagues with waiver moves ending after the Playoffs or gamers who are drafting specifically for the Playoffs.   


The FedExCup Playoffs start with the top 125 in the FedExCup standings competing at Bethpage State Park's Black Course for The Barclays. The top 100 after this event will advance to the Deutsche Bank Championship. The top 70 after Boston will play in the BMW Championship at Crooked Stick GC in Carmel, Ind. The remaining 30 players in the FedExCup standings will duel at THE TOUR Championship in Atlanta.


These rankings are based on the ‘12 FedExCup Playoff standings, stats and recent trends.


Please utilize my “Open Door” email policy to make each fantasy team a success in ’12. I will answer every email and will prefer to talk via the phone on certain occasions. Find me on Twitter at @J_McNamara_Golf or email me at with any questions.


Rank Player         (Volume Four Rank; FedExCup Rank) ... Comments

1.       Rory McIlroy (3; 3) … He will take home the $10M first prize. Strong trends in GIR and scrambling.

2.       Tiger Woods (1; 1) … Has slipped in par breakers, GIR and SG-Putting since Volume Four.

3.       Jason Dufner (13; 2) … The rest of the PGA TOUR is thankful that Dufner ranks 84th in SG-P or he would win more often.

4.       Steve Stricker (6; 10) … I expect a big move from him in the Playoffs. He finished 16th and 23rd, respectively, at Bethpage when the U.S. was held there in ’02 and ’09.

5.       Keegan Bradley (18; 8) … His putting got better over the last month and he plays hard courses really well (13th in adjusted scoring).

6.       Justin Rose (12; 12) … Like Dufner, Rose struggles with his putter (123rd in SG-P).

7.       Bubba Watson (14; 5) … See Dufner and Rose.

8.       Carl Pettersson (20; 7) … I worry about taking him out of the South, but he is on fire.

9.       Zach Johnson (11; 4) … Would have had higher, but I do not like the first three courses for ZJ.

10.     Matt Kuchar (4; 9) … Playing solid. The missed cut at the PGA Championship was his first MC of the year.

11.     Webb Simpson (5; 13) … See Zach Johnson.

12.     Luke Donald (2; 16) … Results are not indicative of how well he's playing.

13.     Hunter Mahan (7; 6) … He ranks 125th in scrambling and 90th in SG-Putting.

14.     Phil Mickelson (9; 14) … I love the Playoff courses for him. His short game is great (ninth in scrambling and 14th in SG-P), but he dropped 50 spots to 117th in GIR since Volume Four.

15.     Jim Furyk (15; 17) … His stats are awesome except for being 165th in par breakers.

16.     Bo Van Pelt (24; 23) … Playoffs reward top 10s and his skill set is great outside of his poor scrambling.

17.     Brandt Snedeker (22; 19) … Playing solid since the WD at the Memorial in June.

18.     Ernie Els (21; 11) … He is still riding high of winning Open Championship.

19.     Dustin Johnson (8; 26) … Like Mickelson, these courses set up well for DJ.

20.     Bill Haas (19; 21) … If you want to get aggressive, he is perfect risk-reward player.

21.     Graeme McDowell (27; 27) … As expected, he plays hard courses well and will thrive at Bethpage (13th in adjusted scoring).

22.     Scott Piercy (48; 15) … Huge trends in right direction. He is finding his own on the PGA TOUR.

23.     Sergio Garcia (44; 33) … Huge win at the Wyndham Championship. He will take recent success and ride it into the Ryder Cup.

24.     Robert Garrigus (43; 24) … Like Piercy, Garrigus is making a name or himself on the PGA TOUR and he ranks 10th in GIR. Impressive.

25.     Rickie Fowler (16; 18) … A streaky player who happens to be cold.

26.     Bud Cauley (53; 35) … Three top-four finishes in his last four starts. Star in the making.

27.     Adam Scott (17; 32) … His ball-striking will be rewarded, but his putting will continue to haunt him in contention.

28.     Louis Oosthuizen (58; 34) … His short game will be only thing that holds him back if he falters.

29.     Ryan Palmer (29; 44) … I am still a believer after a couple mediocre weeks.

30.     John Huh (32; 25) … It does not look like there is any quit in him. Impressive performances all year for the rookie.

31.     Seung-yul Noh (65; 40) … See Huh. Hope you bit on Noh to start the year and were patient.

32.     Martin Laird (30; 31) … Short game keeps him from being much better.

33.     Jimmy Walker (79; 43) … Like Cauley; Walker is trending forward at the right time.

34.     Kyle Stanley (49; 22) … Has now made six of his last seven cuts.

35.     John Senden (28; 37) … His ball-striking should be rewarded at Bethpage, but he cannot make enough putts to get much higher in FedEx Cup standings.

36.     Brendon de Jonge (42; 41) … He has not missed a cut since March and has already played 25 events.

37.     Johnson Wagner (78; 20) … Should probably be lower, but hard to look past that he ranks 20th in FedExCup standings going into the Playoffs.

38.     Kevin Na (23; 38) … It has been an inconsistent run for Na over last six weeks. Withdrew during the PGA Championship with a shoulder injury.

39.     Chris Kirk (73; 80) … This kid has game and I love his upside heading into the Playoffs. He has five straight top 30s.

40.     Ian Poulter (37; 55) … Putter continues to haunt him, but his last three events have been great.

41.     Tim Clark (n/a; 54) … Tiny Tim is doing well (second at the Wyndham last week) and most attributes heading in right direction.

42.     Marc Leishman (75; 28) … Mediocre since his win at the Travelers.

44.     Geoff Ogilvy (41; 68) … Strong short game allows him to play hard courses well (46th in adjusted scoring).

45.     Nick Watney (35; 49) … Has played good over last two months, but his GIR has digressed in that same period. Worrisome.

46.     Ken Duke (63; 42) … Strong season and his strong adjusted scoring will benefit him at Bethpage this week.

47.     Mark Wilson (64; 30) … Still going in the wrong direction.

48.     Troy Matteson (n/a; 60) … En fuego over the last month.

49.     Ben Curtis (51; 29) … Bounced back after poor stretch with a T11 at the PGA Championship.

50.     Cameron Tringale (39; 56) … I am still a believer and Bethpage should reward his ball-striking.

51.     Jonathan Byrd (26; 47) … Poor attributes since Volume Four and he has missed two of his last four cuts (T54 and T55 in cuts made during that stretch).

52.     John Rollins (57; 46) … His putting is holding him back since Volume Four.

53.     Padraig Harrington (46; 62) … Ranks eighth in adjusted scoring and that attribute will help at Bethpage this week.

53.     Jeff Overton (40; 58) … Solid peripherals and has made seven of last eight cuts.

54.     J.J. Henry (n/a; 52)… He has now made five straight cuts with a win in Reno.

55.     Brian Davis (61; 48) … Needs to regain form that he had in June.

56.     Lee Westwood (10; 51) … Needs to play well to get into the TOUR Championship or will need to play a Fall Series event to reach minimum of 15 events on the PGA Tour.

57.     Spencer Levin (36; 45) … Withdrew from The Barclays after the sudden death of his brother, Blake. We will see if he comes back to play in Boston at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Stay tuned to the site.

58.     Ryan Moore (45; 64) … He is so close to breaking through and has made 11 of his last 12 cuts.

59.     Matt Every (83; 53) … Has now made five straight cuts and seems to be past any distractions that came with his wife having their first child in June.

60.     Sean O'Hair (52; 63) … T7 at the Greenbrier, but has been absent since.

61.     Charlie Wi (66; 36) … I have zero confidence in his irons.

62.     Aaron Baddeley (34; 65) … Ranks 187th in GIR. Enough said.

63.     Blake Adams (82; 75) … Playing great since May, but one round a tourney is keeping him from jumping to next level. Very solid attributes across the board.

64.     J.B. Holmes (71;(82) … Before the missed cut last week at the Wyndham, he had made seven in a row.

65.     K.J. Choi (55; 77) … Made both cuts at U.S. Open in ’02 and ’09 at Bethpage and has now made seven of his last eight cuts. Trending in right direction.

66.     William McGirt (n/a; 74) … This consummate ball-striker is peaking at the right time.

67.     D.A. Points (59; 50) … Has missed six of his last eight cuts. Negative trends in par breakers, adjusted scoring, GIR, scrambling and SG-Putting since Volume Four.

68.     Will Claxton (n/a; 89) … HUGE positive trends since Volume Four and has made eight of his last nine cuts.

69.     Pat Perez (67; 72) … Playing solid since May.

70.     Ben Crane (31; 39) … Back injury is a concern and has not played since his withdrawal at the WGC-Bridgestone.

71.     Vijay Singh (n/a; 57) … Came unraveled in the fourth round of the PGA Championship, but made the cut at Bethpage in ’02 and ’09 at the U.S. Open.

72.     Daniel Summerhays (96; 83) … Inconsistent, but has skill set outside of a shaky putter at times (133rd in SG-P).

73.     Harris English (62; 87) … He cannot seem to put all four rounds together, but he is going to be special. I worry about his chipping (166th in scrambling).

74.     Charles Howell III (56; 59) … A major disappointment thus far in ’12.

75.     Michael Thompson (68; 66) … Has missed four of five cuts since his T2 at the U.S. Open. GIR, scrambling, par breakers and adjusted scoring going in wrong direction.

76.     George McNeill (86; 76) … Trending backwards with stats and results indicate his digression.

77.     John Merrick (n/a; 81) … Three top-14 finishes in his last seven starts. Stripes his irons (18th in GIR).

78.     Kevin Streelman (70; 109) … Has now made six of last seven cuts.

79.     Charley Hoffman (84; 67) … Going in wrong direction and has negative trends in GIR, scrambling and SG-Putting.

80.     Scott Stallings (n/a; 86) … On a roll since his win at the True South Classic.

81.     Charl Schwartzel (38; 90) … Needs to make it to Boston to keep from playing a Fall Series event (played 13 times on PGA TOUR heading into Playoffs and needs minimum of 15 starts).

82.     Josh Teater (n/a; 94) … Has made five straight cuts and has three top-10 finishes in that stretch.

83.     Rory Sabbatini (81; 73) … Has missed four of his last five cuts.

84.     Chad Campbell (n/a; 91) … Trending nicely and finished T4 at the Wyndham. His ball-striking will be rewarded at Bethpage.

85.     Sang-moon Bae (69; 71) … He has one top 25 since March.

86.     Graham DeLaet (77; 106) … Has now made five straight cuts and his ball-striking should shine at Bethpage.

87.     Fredrik Jacobson (33; 95)… The Junkman has now made six straight cuts.

88.     Martin Flores (93; 85) … Coming into the event playing well and he plays hard courses well (54th in adjusted scoring).

89.     Ted Potter, Jr. (50; 61) … The Wizard has disappeared since his win at the Greenbrier.

90.     David Toms (54; 69) … Played awful at Wyndham last week. Concerned.

91.     Dicky Pride (95; 79) … Has played his way into the Playoffs and onto the PGA TOUR again in ’13.

92.     Kevin Stadler (87; 70) … Has missed four of his last cuts, but played well in Reno.

93.     Greg Owen (91; 84) … Coming off four forgettable tourneys, and this week will not be much better.

94.     Greg Chalmers (88; 78) … The lefty's poor ball-striking will be exposed at Bethpage.

95.     John Mallinger (92; 88) … Has two top-11 finishes in his last five starts, but the three missed cuts offset his strong finishes.

96.     Ricky Barnes (76; 98) … Finished T2 at the U.S. Open in ’09 at Bethpage and has made five of his last six cuts.

97.     Andres Romero (n/a; 93) … Will not be able to keep bogeys off the card at Bethpage and will limp into Boston.

98.     Brian Gay (74; 110) … Has now made three of his last four cuts.

99.     Brian Harman (94; 97) … Ball-striking is a concern, but playing well.

100.   Gary Christian (n/a; 111) … He has now made five straight cuts. Positive trends and he will make it to Boston.

101.   Heath Slocum (n/a; 124) … Playing well and is worth a flier to make into next stage of Playoffs.

102.   Jonas Blixt (98; 101) … Coming off a rib injury to finish T55 at the Wyndham.

103.   Tommy Gainey (n/a; 102) … End of the road for him in the Playoffs, but he will be around for Fall Series and will be back out on the PGA TOUR in ’13.

104.   Bryce Molder (60; 96) … He has been cold since April. Short game is still strong, but birdies and adjusted scoring going backwards.

105.   Tom Gillis (n/a; 92) … Was on a bit of a roll before withdrawing from Wyndham before the third round due to an illness.

106.   Bob Estes (n/a; 103) … Last top 25 was in May.

107.   Chris Stroud (85; 99) … Spinning his wheels when he makes it to the weekend in his last nine events.

108.   Jason Day (25; 113) … Obviously, this is not where I see him long-term, but his current form does not give me any reason to think he will turn it around this week and advance further into the Playoffs.

109.   Roberto Castro (n/a; 100) … Was running hot, but has now missed three straight cuts.

110.   David Hearn (n/a; 108) … Has positive trends, but not getting any results.

111.   James Driscoll (n/a; 115) … Has missed four straight cuts.

112.   Jeff Maggert (n/a; 107) … Too much golf course in New York and last top 25 was in January.

113.   Henrik Stenson (72; 117) … Withdrew last week from Wyndham because of a “bad stomach.” After The Barclays, he will have to play two Fall Series events to maintain minimum of 15 PGA Tour events since he will not make it to Boston.

114.   Kevin Chappell (n/a; 104) … Finished T3 and T10 at the last two U.S. Opens, but I cannot see him overtaking Bethpage to get into the top 100.

115.   Davis Love III (n/a; 105) … Finished 24th at the U.S. Open in ’02 and T10 last week at the Wyndham, but he will not be a factor this week.

116.   Jerry Kelly (99; 122) … Has made five straight cuts. Played Bethpage at the U.S. Open in ’02, but missed the cut.

117.   Troy Kelly (n/a; 118) … Has not done much since his P2 at the Greenbrier.

118.   Rod Pampling (n/a; 116) … Comes into event in fair form, but not likely to make any noise in New York.

119.   Trevor Immelman (n/a; 114) … He is coming off two straight top-27 finishes, but Bethpage will be too tough to handle with poor GIR (139th), scrambling (121st) and SG-P (130th).

120.   Billy Mayfair (n/a; 119) … His last top 25 came at the Heritage in April.

121.   Harrison Frazar (n/a; 121) … Made it to the weekend on just one occasion in his last eight starts.

122.   Robert Allenby (97; 112) … Cashed once in last eight starts.

123.   Colt Knost (n/a; 120) … Has made only ne of his last 13 cuts.

124.   Boo Weekley (n/a; 123) … The consummate ball-striker fits Bethpage well, but he will not advance to the second stage.

125.   Jason Bohn (n/a; 125) … Comes into the Playoffs on positive trends, but Bethpage is too long for him to get into the top 100 in Boston.

John McNamara wrote full-time for Rotoworld in 2010 and 2011, but he still maintains the pulse of the landscape. He was FSWA’s Golf Writer of the Year in 2008 and 2010.
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