These guys just missed out on the premium list but should not be dismissed this week.
Jimmy Walker: He’s fourth in the all-around and has only one finish in six outside of T26 this season. His best finishes are T4 at Torrey Pines and T3 at Pebble Beach. If you’re wondering where he’s been, he and his wife had a child in February and this is his first start back since the birth.
Louis Oosthuizen: The South African is off to a slow start on TOUR or he would be further up this list. Last year he fired three rounds of 68 to close and finish T20 in his maiden voyage. His ball-striking is never the issue; it’s the putter that makes or breaks him.
Retief Goosen: The two-time champ fired 80 in his final round at The Honda Classic but he’s shown over the years that he enjoys the Copperhead Course. In nine events, he’s also added solo fifth and a pair of T20s to his two victories so this course obviously suits his eye.
Billy Horschel: I can’t leave out a guy who’s made 17 straight cuts and is seventh on the all-around ranking.
Luke Guthrie: Speaking of guys you can’t leave out this week, Guthrie has made six cuts in eight events this season and his worst finish is T27. He made four cuts on the bounce including T18 last week to follow up his third place finish at The Honda Classic. I believe in riding the hot hand.
Robert Garrigus: After losing here in the four man playoff last year, Garrigus will be happy to take on the Copperhead Course again after Doral ate his lunch last week. He made a double on the front all four days (Nos. 4, 5, 6 and 8) and only carded 12 birdies for the week to finish DFL. I’m not deterred; I’m jumping back on! His 68-64 weekend here last year is a much better thought! He’s also banged 16 straight cuts.
Graham DeLaet: In five of seven 2013 events the Canadian has made the cut and in his last three he’s finished T18, third and T21 so I’ll ride the hot hand even though he’s only played once at Innisbrook (MC 2012). He’s third on TOUR in ball-striking.
Bryce Molder: He has three rounds over par in 24 played in 2013. He’s made six straight cuts to open the season and five of those starts have resulted in T30 or better. His T20 finish was his only made cut in his last three starts at Tampa but his current form is the lure here this week. He currently leads the TOUR in strokes gained-putting.
Brian Gay: Speaking of putting, Gay only needed 93 putts last week at Doral. The TOUR all-time record for a single event is 92. This will be Gay’s 13th start at this event, most in the field. He’s made eight of 12 cuts and has two top 10s. If he hits ANY greens this week, the 2013 Humana champion will be in the mix. He’s second in par four birdie-or-better leaders.
Josh Teater: The TEATER HEATER checked in a T39 last week in his first event after getting married. He broke par in all four rounds and continues his excellent start to 2013. He’s fired two rounds over par in 25 this season. Giddy up!
Off the Beaten Path
Either “horse-for-course” or guys off the radar
K.J. Choi: The two-time winner also has a second place finish in 2010 and T6 in 2007 to show for his troubles at the Copperhead Course. He’s made five cuts in a row and is 13th in scrambling. He’s the definition of “horse-for-course” this week.
Sean O’Hair: All or nothing at Innisbrook in eight events. He’s been cut six times, won and finished T10. His record this year mirrors that as he missed the cut in his first three events but has recorded T16, WD and T18 in his last three starts. High risk but potentially a high reward, he’ll help in deep, weekly drafts.
Brian Stuard: This is the third week in a row in the column for Stuard. He’s now made all six cuts to open his 2013 season and he was T4 last week in Puerto Rico. He’s eighth in the all-around ranking, eight in scoring average and eighth in strokes gained-putting. Quiet.
Boo Weekley: He’s made five cuts in a row including a T8 finish last week in Puerto Rico. He’s second on TOUR in ball-striking and he’s been playing well. If his putter even remotely cooperates this week, he could disrupt.
Brendon de Jonge: He’s finished T11 and T29 his last two times out and his settling right into to his pattern of cashing checks just like he has the last three years on TOUR. He’s sixth in ball-striking and 10th in the all-around.
Jordan Spieth: He’s one of the hottest players anywhere playing right now. His last four starts have been T22 (PGATOUR), T7 and T4 (Web.com Tour) and T2 last week in Puerto Rico. This time last year he was playing golf at the University of Texas. These last four weeks he’s won over $400,000 playing golf. Hot is hot.
Robert Streb: After missing three straight cuts, Streb rebounded for T18 at The Honda Classic and racked up T11 last week in Puerto Rico. He’s made the cut in four of seven events this year and three of those have hit the top 25. Stretch for Streb? I just might…
Matt Jones: The last three weeks he’s finished T14, T18 and T30 so he’s trending in the right direction. He’s made five cuts this year and they have all been T30 or better. Bad news is he’s only fired one round in the 60s in four trips to Tampa. He should definitely find a spot in deep leagues.