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American Express DraftKings: Best Golf DFS Plays in Each Price Range

American Express DraftKings: Best Golf DFS Plays in Each Price Range

If you were looking for an easy, simple, and straightforward PGA Tour Event to handicap and analyze for DFS, this week’s American Express is certainly not it. The start of the California swing is not going to be simple to analyze but we are going to give it our all and make some excellent American Express DraftKings picks. 

So what makes this event different than most other PGA Tour stops? First off, this week is one of only two Pro-Am’s on tour. The cut is after 54-holes, not the usual 36. Golfers will also be playing three different courses throughout the event and longshots tend to excel here! Another difficult aspect of this event is that we only have shotlink data for the stadium course. Other than that, it is a pretty normal week.

We have World Number #1 and past champion Jon Rahm in the field as well as the 2021 FedEx Cup Champion, Patrick Cantlay. Also, mid-tier stars like Scottie Scheffler, Sungjae Im, and Matthew Wolff all looking to contend. 

The difficult thing about this week is that although all the courses being played are all short, par 72 with overseeded Poa greens, there isn’t one glaring attribute that is needed to succeed on all the courses. The blueprint for winning here is not as clear as in other weeks. But, I think I have identified the golfers that are going to excel on these three different courses. 

Stadium Course (played twice by all golfers to make the cut)

Par: 72 (4 Par 5’s. 10 Par 4’s, 4 Par 3’s) 

Length: 7,140 yards

Greens: Over Seeded Poa 

Architect: Pete Dye

Average winning score L6 years: -23

La Quinta CC (played once)

Par: 72 (4 Par 5’s. 10 Par 4’s, 4 Par 3’s) 

Length: 7,060 yards

Greens: Over Seeded Poa 

Architect: Lawrence Hughes

Nicklaus Tournament Course: (played once)

Par: 72 (4 Par 5’s. 10 Par 4’s, 4 Par 3’s) 

Length: 7,181 yards

Greens: Over Seeded Poa 

Architect: Jack Nicklaus 

If you want a deeper dive into these courses be sure to check out Steve Schirmers Course Preview podcast on the SGPN.

Stats I am looking for this week:

  • SG: OTT
  • Birdie or Better Percentage
  • Par 5 Scoring 
  • SG: Putting (Poa)
  • Recent Form
  • Proximity 150-175

So without further ado let’s get into my favorite plays your American Express DraftKings lineups.

American Express DraftKings: Best Golf DFS Plays in Each Price Range

$10,000 Range

Patrick Cantlay $10,900 

You cannot have many flaws in your game and be able to call yourself a FedEx Cup Champion. Cantlay’s run of impressive wins at the end of the 2021 PGA Tour season should not get overlooked as he heads back to the West Coast. Runner up at this event in 2021 after a blistering hot Sunday 61, I think we will see more of the same this week. 

What I really like about Cantlay is how easily his game seemed to come back at the Sentry Tournament of Champions two weeks ago. Patrick did not play a single event in the fall swing and still finished 4th at TOC, gaining 5.9 strokes tee to green. He is also excellent on Pete Dye tracks. Patty Ice is in for a big 2022 season and I think he gets his first win of 2022 here in Palm Springs

$9,000 Range

Matthew Wolff $9,300

I think Wolff is a lot of people’s first instinct this week, and that is for good reason. After a disappointing 2021 season, this 22-year-old came out hot in the swing season. Highlighted by a second at the shiners (favorite comp course), Wolff has finishes of 5th, 11th, and 17th in his other three starts. 

Wolff ranks 4th in par 5 scoring, 3rd in birdies or better percentage, and is an excellent Poa putter. Another thing I like about Matt is that he can club down and be more accurate off the tee and still use his length to his advantage. 

It is difficult because Wolff did not play any stops on the Hawaii swing, as many champions of this event tend to have played weeks prior. I am not however going to be a slave to random trends. Wolff makes for a great DFS play this week.

$8,000 Range 

Jhonattan Vegas $8,100

Elite driver of the golf ball, makes a ton of birdies, excellent par 5 scorer, Vegas is the 8k DFS play this week. Jhonattan Vegas has been a very profitable golfer to bet on and play in DFS and I do not think that stops in 2022. 

Winner of this event in 2011, Vegas has serious upside given that his best attributes are going to be very important for going low in Palm Spring. Vegas ranks 6th in my model over the past 50 rounds. Highlighted by being 2nd in Strokes Gained Off the Tee and 4th in Birdies or Better gained. 

$7,000 Range

Hayden Buckley $7,200

This is a DFS play that I expect to be a popular one, but once again I think it is for good reason. The PGA Tour Rookie has been excellent recently and fits the narrative of a longshot winner at the AmEx. 

Buckley had some excellent finishes in the swing season and picked up right when he left off with a 12th place finish last week at the Sony. Highlighted by his driving accuracy and approach play, Buckley possesses the skill set to contend as a long shot at this event. Hayden also finished 8th at the Shiners, which, as I stated before is my favorite comp course for this event. 

$6,000 

James Hahn $6,600 

As we really go down the board, I am looking for golfers that make the cut and have shown promise on similar courses, Hahn checks those boxes for me. James has made 6/7 cuts at this event dating back to 2013, and I expect the same this week.

Another reason I like Hahn is his 10th place finish at the WMPO last year in which he was leading on Sunday at one point. These two events feature the same type of greens and are similar courses. Hahn’s upside makes him a great American Express DraftKings play this week. 

Optimal Lineup 

Patrick Cantlay $10,900

Matthew Wolff $9,300

Jhonattan Vegas $8,100

Hayden Buckley $7,200

James Hahn $6,600

Adam Hadwin $7,900

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