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Fantasy Golf Value Picks: Top DraftKings PGA TOUR DFS Bargain Plays for the CJ CUP

Alex Hunter provides his top DraftKings fantasy golf value plays for the CJ CUP.

Following a one-week hiatus in Japan, the PGA TOUR returns to mainland this week for the CJ CUP, which will be played at Congaree Golf Club (par 71, 7,655 yards, Bermuda greens), located in Ridgeland, South Carolina. This will be the first time this Tom Fazio design has hosted the CJ CUP and the second time Congaree has hosted a PGA TOUR event. The par 71 made its debut last year for the Palmetto Championship, which was a one-time replacement for the Canadian Open due to the Coronavirus pandemic. That week, Garrick Higgo came out victorious at 11-under, one shot clear of six players.

Congaree Golf Club is a unique track that was designed after sand belt courses in Australia, that features 130 acres of sand/waste areas and with water coming into play on 10 holes. While wide and with minimal rough, all the fairways are boarded by sand, making accuracy off the tee more crucial than distance, despite this course’s daunting length. The small Bermuda putting surfaces at Congaree all have sand surrounding them to some degree as well, putting an emphasis on strong iron play, as expected. When Higgo won the Palmetto Championship, he finished 12th in SG: Approach and third in greens-in-regulation for the event.

Congaree presents an interesting collection of holes, including two drivable 360-yard par fours and three par fives that all yielded a birdie rate of at least 28% at the Palmetto Championship. Including Higgo, five of the top-nine finishers at Congaree last year finished the tournament top-12 in par-five efficiency, showing us that capitalizing on these par fives will be essential this week. Overall, Congaree is a tricky venue — evident from only seven players cracking double-digit strokes under par at the Palmetto Championship — and we should be putting a larger weight than usual on bogey avoidance this week. Also, while not a must, seeking out players who have compelling histories on courses designed by Fazio is a savvy strategy.

Just like last week’s ZOZO Championship, the CJ CUP is a limited field event of 78 players that features no cut. However, this is a much stronger group of golfers competing, with 19 of the top-30 ranked players in the world competing. Rory McIlroy — who won last year’s CJ CUP at the Summit Club which was also designed by Fazio — is the betting favorite on the DraftKings Sportsbook at +650. Notably, eight of McIlroy’s 22 PGA TOUR wins have come at a Fazio creation, making him a worthwhile investment this week. This stacked field for the CJ CUP is filled with appealing bargain plays on DraftKings this week and below, I dive into four of my favorite options that all cost less than $7.5K.

Andrew Putnam ($7,400) – Putnam is playing exceptional golf right now. At the ZOZO Championship this past week, the 33-year-old was extremely close to picking up the second PGA TOUR win of his career, finishing runner-up to champion Keegan Bradley by one shot. Putnam finished in a tie for the fewest bogeys recorded at Narashino Country Club and was one of only seven players to shoot under par for all four rounds of the event. Most notably, Putnam carded an eight-under 62 during the second round, tying his career low on the PGA TOUR. Putnam has now racked up six top-30 finishes in his last seven starts. During this stretch, he has hit 70% of greens in regulation and has gained strokes with his putter at every event. Carrying the same odds to win the CJ CUP on the DraftKings Sportsbook as Corey Conners — who costs $600 more for DFS purposes — Putnam is a value play that can’t be ignored at only $7.4K.

Rickie Fowler ($7,400) - After a disappointing campaign last season, Fowler has looked sensational, finishing T6 at the Fortinet Championship and then T2 at the ZOZO Championship. During the latter finish, the 33-year-old ranked fifth in greens-in-regulation and tied for the most birdies converted at the Narashino Country Club. Fowler has shot under par in six of these past eight rounds, most notably with a seven-under 63 during the second round of the ZOZO Championship, which is his lowest score since last year’s edition of the CJ CUP, which as noted above, was played at another Fazio design at the Summit Club. Fowler was in contention that week with a T3 finish and has always thrived at Fazio creations, with two of his five PGA TOUR wins coming at tracks designed by the famous architect. Fowler is criminally underpriced for his upside this week and without a doubt one of the best values available for the CJ CUP.

Russell Henley ($7,300) – While Henley has missed two of his past three cuts, the Bermuda specialist is a terrific target at this season-low price tag. All three of Henley’s victories on the PGA TOUR have come at venues that are home to Bermuda putting surfaces, including a win at PGA National for the Honda Classic in 2014, which just like Congaree, was designed by Fazio. Overall, when we compare this elite field’s last 50 rounds at courses with Bermuda greens, Henley ranks seventh in total strokes gained. In addition to his love for Bermuda, Henley’s ball striking has been superb as of late, despite the poor recent finishes. Over his last 24 rounds, the 33-year-old ranks third in SG: Approach, 10th in SG: Tee-to-Green, eighth in greens-in-regulation and first in fairways gained. Henley brings top-20 upside this week and could get slept on in GPPs due to recency bias.

Chez Reavie ($6,000) – After opening with a four-over 74 at the ZOZO Championship last week, Reavie shot under par shot under par in his next three rounds, improving by one-stroke each day. Reavie concluded the event with a three-under 67, while gaining 2.3 total strokes in the process, which is the most strokes he has gained in 12 rounds. Reavie’s game is clearly trending in the right direction, and let’s not forget the 40-year-old just won the Barracuda Championship in July. Furthermore, Reavie has played well at the CJ CUP in the past, with a pair of top-15 finishes in three appearances at the no-cut event. He also impressed at Congaree last season, posting a T15 finish. At this bare minimum salary, Reavie must be considered.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Hunta512) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.