Next up on the PGA TOUR schedule is the Travelers Championship, which begins Thursday morning at TPC River Highlands (par 70, 6,841 yards) in Cromwell, Conn. At last year’s edition of this event, Dustin Johnson added another win to his long resume, beating Kevin Streelman by one shot. DJ finished at -19 and the average winning score at this tournament has been -15.6 over the last decade.
Evident from these numbers, we can safely expect another birdie fest at this very short Pete Dye creation. In addition to being a strong birdie maker, elite approach play and par 4 efficiency are king at this par 70.
For a more in-depth breakdown of TPC River Highlands and also to see my three favorite bets on the DraftKings Sportsbook, be sure to check out my Best Bets piece from earlier this week. Below, I feature three GPP pivots to consider for DFS purposes this week on DraftKings for the Travelers Championship.
Projected Popular Golfer: Patrick Cantlay ($10,400)
Pivot: Dustin Johnson ($11,400)
In this upper tier, the crowd is expected to take the savings with Cantlay this week, while Johnson, who is the most lucrative option on the board, could hover right around 10%. I have no issues with Cantlay and think he is a smart option in cash games, but for GPPs, paying up to be contrarian with Johnson is a sharp strategy. First and foremost, he is the defending champ. Last year was his first appearance in Cromwell since 2014, and Johnson didn’t disappoint in his return, easily leading the field in SG on the par 4s at TPC River Highlands.
Also, he loved the new POA/Bentgrass mixed putting surfaces that were installed four years ago, finishing fourth in SGP. Johnson now heads back to Connecticut to defend his Travelers title gaining strokes with his flat stick, his irons and from T2G in each of his last two starts, resulting in a T10 at the Palmetto Championship and then a T19 at the U.S. Open. Last, but not least, the 37-year-old has always thrived on Par 70s throughout his career, and including his win here last season, Johnson has produced a ridiculous six top-10 finishes In his last seven attempts on par 70s.
$8,000 to $10,000 Range
Projected Popular Golfer: Paul Casey ($9,900)
Pivot: Scottie Scheffler ($9.600)
As seen in my Best Bets article, I love Casey this week, and while I don’t think you need to full fade him in DFS, pivoting off him for some of your lineups makes a ton of sense. He is projected to be the most owned player of the week, and Scheffler should come with nearly half the ownership in GPPs.
This past week at the U.S. Open, the 25-year-old finished with a T7, which was his seventh top 10 so far this season, and his second straight top 10 at a major. The previous week, Scheffler was outstanding at Muirfield Village, ranking second in SGT2G and eighth in SG: APP, lifting him to a solo third-place finish at The Memorial. It’s safe to say Scheffler’s first PGA TOUR win is coming very soon, and TPC River Highlands is a perfect spot for him to break through. If we analyze this field’s last 50 rounds on par 70s, Scheffler ranks seventh in total strokes gained. So why is his ownership expected to be modest this week? Well, in Scheffler’s debut at the Travelers last season, he missed the cut. But, at the time, the University of Texas product wasn’t even close to the player he is now, and it would be foolish to hold one missed cut against Scheffler considering his current form.
$7,000 to $8,000 Range
Projected Popular Golfer: Keegan Bradley ($7,900)
Pivot: Doc Redman ($7,600)
Bradley is gaining a ton of attention this week because he grew up about three hours north of Cromwell in Woodstock, Vt., and possesses a 9/10 record at TPC River Highlands. But, the 35-year-old is coming off his worst ball-striking performance in nearly two years, and rostering a chalky Bradley is never a smart move. This brings me to Redman, who is slated for right around 10% ownership, despite finishing runner up at the Palmetto Championship in his last start.
At Congaree Golf Club, Redman posted 10.6 SGT2G, setting a new career-high, while also gaining 5.8 strokes on APP, ranking him fifth in the stat for the week. The 23-year-old now travels to TPC River Highlands, where he earned a T11 in his course debut a year ago. Redman has only missed one weekend in his past six starts and is also seven for his past 10 in made cuts at par 70s. Hopefully, his low ownership projection pans out, because Redman is one of my favorite values of the week at only $7,600.
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