Pat Mayo and Geoff Fienberg preview the course and run through the odds while making their 2022 John Deere Classic picks. The guys give their fantasy golf picks and provide their one and done strategy for the event from TPC Deere Run.
2022 John Deere Classic: Field
156 Players | Top 65 & Ties Make The Cut
First Tee: Thursday, June 30
Defending Champion: Lucas Glover
For a tournament that’s been around for so long you have to feel for the John Deere Classic. Previously, it had been held the week prior to The Open, where the winner would gain the final spot in the year’s final Major. Since every recognizable player had previously qualified for The Open, chances are they weren’t going to show up. In lieu of traveling to Silvis, Illinois, most of the top talent either took a rest or played in the Scottish Open to prepare themselves with links golf. Also, an excuse not to go to Silvis, Illinois. I get it.
Now, there’s an even bigger problem. The John Deere has been pushed back a week as the Scottish Open is now an a co-sanctioned event for the PGA TOUR and DP World TOUR, giving PGA TOUR players more of a reason to head over early and skip out. AND, the LIV TOUR is playing its first U.S. event in opposition in Portland this week, which has a substantially better field. Then, if any top PGA TOUR player was still on the fence about the John Deere, there’s a good chance they’ve opted to play in the JP McManus Pro-Am in Ireland next Monday and Tuesday. That event is drawing most of the world’s top-20 ranked players and Tiger Woods. It’s weirdly one of the strangest fields of any event all year. It’s like the Pebble Beach event, but if all the good players showed up.
It’s sad, as the John Deere has been a full status PGA TOUR event since 1972, but this could be one of the first causalities of the LIV split and new PGA TOUR schedule. It’s simply not a priority event for any one at this point. Steve Stricker, maybe, but he’s 55 now. Looking to the next few weeks on the PGA TOUR schedule, it’s the Scottish then the British Opens, with the Barbasol and Barracuda being run stateside as alternate events. The John Deere has essentially been relegated to that status.
When Jay Monahan released some of the proposed ideas for juicing the prize pools and creating new, no-cut events to combat LIV, more emphasis should have been placed on this part of the schedule. You’re not drawing any stars to these events (and that includes the 3M Open and Rocket Mortgage following The Open), so maybe allocate some of the money to this month stretch and try and make it into something. A mid-season mini event with its own points structure where the top 10 at the end get full status and earn a big pay day. Or something like that. If the fields during the “ALT SWING” aren’t going to draw any elites anyway, at least make it mean something: A legitimate life changing opportunity for the participants.
At least it gives the PGA TOUR a chance to showcase some potential up-and-comers, and it may work as an avenue for the recently graduated college stars to elevate their status. Especially if there’s a GIANT payday at the end. And you can still use the wonky formats. The Barracuda can stick with Stableford scoring. Maybe make one of the tournaments a match play for all the money to end it. Hell, throw the Zurich into this mix as a team event. I’m spit balling here, but they need to try something or these tournaments are legit going to get 17 people watching.
Just look at this field. The JDC is just one letter away from being on the Wendy’s value menu. Daniel Berger headlines this field; that should tell you all you need to know. Berger’s the only top-50 player in the 2022 John Deere Classic field at No. 25. Webb Simpson is the other “brand name” in attendance, other than Steve Stricker, I suppose. Then it gets dicey.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Daniel Berger has withdrawn from the John Deere Classic.
After Berger and Webb, the next tier of talent is comprised of Adam Hadwin, Denny McCarthy,
Davis Riley, Brendan Todd, Mav McNealy, Nick Hardy, Sahith Theegala, C.T. Pan, Cam Davis, Kevin Streelman, Cameron Champ, and defending champ Lucas Glover.
Jason Day is also in the field. Times are tough for Jason Day.
2022 John Deere Classic: Key Stats
- Strokes Gained: Approach
- Opportunities Gained
- Par 4s Gained 400-450 Yards
- Proximity Gained 150-175 Yards
Mayo’s Key Stats powered by FantasyNational.com
2022 John Deere Classic: Course
- Course: TPC Deere Run
- Yards: 7,268
- Par: 71
- Greens: Bentgrass
2022 John Deere Classic: Past Winners
- 2022: Lucas Glover -19
- 2019: Dylan Frittelli -21
- 2018: Michael Kim -27
- 2017: Bryson DeChambeau -18
- 2016: Ryan Moore -22
- 2015: Jordan Spieth -20
- 2014: Brian Harman -22
2022 John Deere Classic: Picks
The man of many question marks finally flipped his putter (a bit) at the Travelers, and now gets a course perfectly tailored to his skills. He’s gained an average of over seven strokes tee-to-green over his last three starts, while sitting second in the field in proximity from 125-150 yards, along with top-25 grades in birdies-or-better gained, P4 350-400, and P4 400-450 over the past 24 rounds.
Back from the unknown, Kraft has now strung together a weekend appearance in four of his past five starts (with two top-20 finishes), and it can be directly related to two key skills: putting inside 10 feet and scoring short par 4s. Two things that are especially perfect for TPC Deere Run. With eight holes measuring between 350-450 yards, a quick scan of Kraft’s numbers reveal he’s one of the best players in the field on holes from that range over the past 24 rounds. While his putting overall has been good, he’s been excellent from in close, the key to contending at an easy course. He’s No. 1 in this field from inside 10 feet. At an event with over a 70% GIR rate and a lower-than-average proximity-to-hole on said GIRs, whoever makes the most eight-footers this week will likely win.
Pat Mayo is an award-winning video host and producer of long and short-form content, and the host of The Pat Mayo Experience daily talk show. (Subscribe for video or audio). Mayo (@ThePME) won the 2020 Fantasy Sports Writing Association Daily Fantasy Writer of the Year and Golf Writer of the Year awards, along with the Fantasy Sports Trade Association Best Sports Betting Analyst award, and was a finalist for four FSWA Awards in 2020 (Best Podcast, Best Video, Daily Fantasy Writer of the Year, Golf Writer of the Year). His 21 FSWA nominations lead all writers this decade and are third-most all-time. Mayo has been recognized across multiple sports (Football, Baseball & Golf), mediums (Video, Writing & Podcasting), genre (Humor), and game formats (Daily Fantasy and Traditions Season Long). Beyond sports, Mayo covers everything from entertainment to pop culture to politics. If you have a fantasy question, general inquiry or snarky comment, ship it to Mayo at ThePatMayoExperience@gmail.com and the best will be addressed on the show.
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