After an exciting Ryder Cup for the States, we return to our second iteration of the fall swing, the Sanderson Farms Championship. The Country Club of Jackson is a fairly straightforward course with the only potential danger being the narrow fairways being more difficult to hit than the average course on tour. With that being said, this rough is not penal enough to deter the bombers from smashing it off the tee. Looking at the last two champions, Sergio Garcia and Cameron Champ, both are elite drivers of the ball that are horrid putters. I prefer the long hitters here but I think Strokes Gained: Off the Tee is the biggest difference maker this week, even if it’s through the accuracy realm. Guys like Sungjae Im, Corey Conners, and Doug Ghim, top end drivers that excel with accuracy, are still in play even though they don’t bomb it.
10k Favorite: Will Zalatoris
The top end of the board has a few near elite golfers with some interesting pricing. Will Zalatoris is my favorite play from up here as will be most of the field from early ownership projections. He’s 4th in the field in SG: Approach, 14th in SG: Off the Tee, and ranks in the top ten in both Good Drives and SG: Par 5. I’m highly considering an outright bet on him here as well.
The rest of this range is quite alright. Defending champion Sergio Garcia is the ownership pivot up top and could certainly reproduce last year’s results with his great recent form at the Ryder Cup. He ranks 1st in SG: Off the Tee and 16th in SG: Approach, which are some elite ballstriking numbers over the last fifty rounds. He would be my favorite. I’m fading an 11k Sam Burns pretty easily although he certainly can prove me wrong on a course where par five scoring is going to be quite necessary. Sungjae and Conners are both fine, but I still prefer the longer hitters.
9k Favorite: Harold Varner III
Finally, I didn’t want to have to badmouth Varner in two straight tournaments. With an 11th, 12th, and 16th in his last three starts, he’s in a great stretch of golf. The big putting spikes are a bit of a concern, but the ballstriking has been right there with it. I’ll certainly get over the field on HV3.
If Varner were a tier below in price, this spot would have been reserved for Charley Hoffman. Consider it a 1B if you will. No doubt that Hoffman has had a beautiful resurgence in 2021, ranking 1st in SG: Approach and SG: Par 5 in the last fifty rounds. I think he might be a bit underpriced for this field so he should be one of the first you consider for your lineups. This is also a great course fit for the Aussie Cam Davis. He’s super long off the tee and has better odds than most to put up the lowest round of the week. The world will play Mito Pereira this week but for good reason. If you want to pivot elsewhere, I totally understand. Especially at that price.
8k Favorite: Gary Woodland
This range is chock-full of guys I want to play, but my favorite is definitely going to be Gary Woodland. He’s super long off the tee, 21st in SG: Approach, and figuring out the short game a bit more every week. He and 8k co-favorite Matt Wolff are two guys I want to be early on.
The other guys that pique my interest in this range are Carlos Oritz and Mattias Schwab. Ortiz is someone that has shown us great results with a hot driver and putter. He’s won the Houston Open before, which is a similar track to the CC of Jackson. Schwab is a great ballstriker from overseas looking to get his tour card. He’s also going to be extremely low-owned, something I can certainly get behind.
7k Favorite: Taylor Pendrith
The bomber from Canada is someone coming from the Korn Ferry Tour and is looking to obtain his tour card. The price is a bit high for someone fairly unfamiliar to the public so hopefully he doesn’t get too popular. If we can get average approach, then his driver and putter should be able to carry him to a high finish.
My two favorite plays outside of Pendrith are Matt Wallace and Lucas Herbert. Herbert, a fairly recent Euro winner, is another bomber that shouldn’t have trouble navigating this course with a decent iron game. Matt Wallace, for his pedigree, is way too underpriced. I thought he would be 8k in this field. The Tee-to-green is in full swing and has winning potential in a field like this.
6k Favorite: Anirban Lahiri
Lahiri is downright way too inexpensive not to consider his skillset. He’s someone that mashes it off the tee and can get lights out with the putter. He’s shown us some quality upside in these easier fields and courses. He’s also gained in SG: Off the Tee in his last eight events.
There are plenty of plays down this far if you’re looking to save salary. Russell Knox, Trey Mullinax, and Adam Schenk are my definite favorites of the bunch but these guys should be saved for deep GPPs.