These guys just missed out
Robert Karlsson: I’m not leaving a guy off who has been in two playoffs here in the last three years! Sure, he lost both of them but he was in position late on Sunday so his frame of mind should be excellent this week. His only finish of note this season was T4 at Quail Hollow, his home course, so I’m connecting the dots. His solid short game will make or break him this week.
Jeff Overton: He was in a run of very solid form before he was DQ during the third round at Colonial after rounds of 67-69. His MC last week doesn’t wash that form down the drain and his past history around Memphis enhances his value. In five starts, he’s bagged two top 10s, T13, T35 and T38.
Jimmy Walker: His streak is now up to 24 consecutive weekends and DYNOMITE absolutely kills par fours as he’s second on TOUR in par four performance at 20-under! It’s hard to look away from all of that even though his best finish here is T22 in four tries but the 2013 version of Walker has been excellent.
Brendon de Jonge: Death, taxes and de Jonge! If there’s an event and he’s eligible, he’s teeing it up and that’s the case again this week. He’s 14 of 18 and has racked up eight top 25s this season. He’s eighth in ball-striking and 30th in scrambling and you know he likes to grind.
Billy Horschel: His iron play let him down last week as he was T58 GIR but he was ninth in accuracy off the tee and sixth in putts per GIR so it’s not like he was awful! Oh, and he made 20 birdies which was good enough for T2. Sometimes you have to peel back the layer of the onion to see what’s inside. Horschel is 11th in ball-striking and 10th in par four performance. He’s top 10 in many categories…
John Merrick: He’s improved every year he’s teed it up in Memphis as he began MC, T73, T53, T11 and second last year. His ball-striking was on full display at Riviera for his first win of the season earlier this year and he should be excited to see the tight fairways and smallish greens here at TPC Southwind which have been good to him as well. He only has one top 25 in his last nine after his victory but he should have good vibes around here this week.
Roberto Castro: His 17 starts this season is giving de Jonge a run for his money in the ironman standings that don’t exist. He’s played the weekend in his last five tournaments because of his ball-striking and tidiness around the greens. In his first time around TPC Southwind last year he found 68-66 Friday-Saturday but had bookends of 73-72 to knock him to T27.
Ken Duke: Better get on board as the Duke experience is teetering in the right direction! He’s the king of playing in patches and he’s in a good one right now with finishes of T31 at Colonial and T16 last week at Memorial. Those results came on the heels of three straight trunk shutters earlier in May. Duke’s T7 finish here last year doesn’t hurt his argument this week earlier. He’ll hit most of the fairways and as usual, his flat stick will determine how high he finishes.
Brian Davis: He’s made eight of his last nine weekends and was solo second here back in 2007 so there are worse options to have in a deep, weekly draft. His lack of length off the tee is made up for by splitting most fairways and that will give him a chance around here.
Off the Beaten Path
Either “horse-for-course”, guys off the radar or both
David Toms: Since the Masters he’s posted T47, MC and MC so I couldn’t move him up this week even though he’s crushed this place in the past. He won on the “old” course in 2003, backed that up with a win on the “new” course in 2004 and added a second, T10, third, T37 and T2 before T29, MC and MC the last three years. Horse for Memphis.
Brian Gay: He’s six of nine since the move to Bermudagrass and that includes his 2009 title when he scorched TPC Southwind for 262. Five of his six finishes are T16 or better so I think we can safely conclude he’s a fan. Be careful as he WD his last start and T35 is his best finish in last dozen starts.
Justin Leonard: The good news is he won this in 2004 and 2008. The bad news is that this is an ODD-numbered year. He’s missed the last three weekends in Memphis but is 13 for 16 this season. He’s definitely worth a shot in deep weekly games.
Stephen Ames: In 12 events this season his best finish is T20 on the opening week at the Sony. He was five-under at the HPBNC his last time out before a 71-75 weekend knocked him back. His last five tournaments here have been quite interesting as he’s finished MC, T8, T15, MC and T13.
Camilo Villegas: Only three of his last 12 round are over par so that tells me he’s getting closer to finding something out here. Plus, Ned has been on him the last few weeks on-and-off so I know I’m not the only one catching this. In six weekends in Memphis, Villegas has been T18 or better in five of them. He MC last year 74-69.
Jeff Maggert: He’s 6th in driving accuracy and 18th in GIR but I’ll save his putting numbers for another day. The 2006 champ ran out 66-68 last year before a 73-72 killed off his chances. He was T2 at THE PLAYERS and 68-73 at HPBNC in his last two. Not trrbl.
Bob Estes: In nine events since the course change in 2004, Estes has made the cut in eight of them. His worst Sunday showing was T34 last year. He has three top 10s in that span including second in 2004 and T8 in 2010.
Take It Deep
Martin Flores: Fired T43 and T14 on the Texas swing and was T13 after a 69-65 weekend here last year.
Bud Cauley: His best two week stretch of the season have been his last two outings, T14 Colonial and T34 last week. He’s played well in the part of the world before at True South and The Viking in Mississippi.
Chad Campbell: He’s the PERFECT long shot for this week as his best finish this season is T41. He’s played nine of 12 rounds in the last three FESJC at par or better.
Henrik Norlander: He’s played the weekend in seven straight events and that’s what you’re looking for if you’re digging this deep.
Casey Wittenberg: Memphis-born and bred but has missed 11 of 17 cuts this year.
These folks have struggled on this track or in general recently. Each week, one player from this list seems to hit the top 10. Figure that out, right!!?!? Last week, Bill Haas, who had never finished better than T30 at the Memorial racked up T4. OF COURSE HE DID.
Ian Poulter: He fits the bill as a guy who should play well here but his recent results don’t exactly have me scurrying to put his name on my team sheet.
Kevin Stadler: With T73 being his best start in his last four, I’ll sit on the sidelines this week.
Paul Goydos: Via his Twitter account, he’s been playing but in the first tournament back, I’ll give him a chance to get back into the swing of things.
Rookie of the Week Last Week
I keep an eye on the youngin’s each week to see who is making the most noise.
Sony: Russell Henley WIN
Humana: David Lingmerth P2
Farmers: Brad Fritsch T9
WMPO: James Hahn T16
AT&T: James Hahn T3
NTO: Luke Guthrie T21
WGC-Match Play: Russell Henley 2nd round
Honda: Luke Guthrie 3rd
WGC-Cadillac: Russell Henley T28
Puerto Rico: Jordan Spieth 2nd
Tampa Bay: Jordan Spieth T7; Shawn Stefani T7; Ben Kohles T7
Arnold Palmer: Ben Kohles T14
Shell Houston Open: Robert Streb T22
Valero Texas Open: Ben Kohles T37
Masters: Russell Henley MC
RBC Heritage: Russell Henley T6
Zurich Classic: D. H. Lee T8
Wells Fargo Championship: Derek Ernst WIN
THE PLAYERS: David Lingmerth. Great back-to-back weeks for the rookies on TOUR!
HPBNC: Morgan Hoffmann T5
Colonial: Jordan Spieth, yep, him again, T7
Memorial: Russell Henley T6