The Deutsche Bank Championship takes center stage from TPC Boston in Norton, Massachusetts on this holiday weekend event that runs from Friday to Monday.
TPC Boston has been one of the easier stops in recent years and it won’t be any different this week. The 7,216-yard, Par-71 layout is fairly wide open but it’s the large greens that contribute to the low scores. Ideal weather conditions will only help. TPC Boston ranked 31st in difficulty with a scoring average of 70.647 last year and it was the fourth-easiest Par 71 on tour. Rory McIlroy, the 2012 winner, finished at 20-under and 50 of the 78 players making the cut were able to break par over the four days.
Since its inception in 2003, every winner here has carded a 14-under or lower with four of those resulting in 20-under or lower. Basically, this is a birdie paradise so it comes down to the best ball strikers and what putters are hot.
Round 1 of the FedEx Cup Playoffs is history as Adam Scott carded a final-round 66 to win by one shot over Tiger Woods, Graham DeLaet, Justin Rose and Gary Woodland to take the Barclays.
Scott moved to second in the FedEx Cup standings, trailing Tiger Woods by just 162 points. It was Scott's second win of the season and his third Top 5 in his last four starts. The field has been cut to the Top 100 for the second leg of the playoffs taking place this week.
The top 70 will advance to the third round of the playoffs which take place at the BMW Championship in two weeks. Current strong form is typically a big factor when looking for a winner, although past course success and good iron play also needs to be factored in. There are no tricks here, just a course ripe for the taking.
Tiger Woods (+650) is the favorite but his back has to be a concern. It was just a spasm that affected him last Sunday but it forced him to withdraw from the Notah Begay charity event Wednesday. While the Friday start will certainly help, there’s too much concern and not enough value to consider him this week.
Jason Day (+1,800) opened with a Thursday 66 at the Barclays but played the rest of the tournament at 3-over to never make a move. Still, it was his ninth Top 25 of the season and he has yet to miss a cut in 17 medal-play events, so he won't be leaving come Sunday. He seems to be in contention in the big events and that has been the case here with a T3 in 2011 and a T2 in 2010.
Webb Simpson (+2,500) made an early tournament run for us last week but a Saturday 74 took him out of contention and he had to settle for a T15. He’s been on a solid streak though, posting four straight Top 25s and he’s tied for 20th on tour in birdies made. He won this event in 2011 in a playoff over Chez Reavie and followed it up with a T18 last year.
Keegan Bradley (+3,000) will round out the three players on this week's card that we also took last week. A Friday 63 put him right in the mix at the Barclays but a 4-over weekend left him with a T33 finish. Now, he heads back home to New England where he will be a crowd favorite. He has not missed a cut in six straight stops with four resulting in Top 20s, including a T2. He finished T13 here last year.
Brandt Snedeker (+3,000) has fallen off the radar with two straight missed cuts following a T66 at the PGA Championship. This goes against the strong current form theory. However, if there’s a place where he can break his slump, TPC Boston is it. Last year, he finished solo sixth, 2011 finished T3 and 2010 finished T5. He’s considered one of the best putters on tour and if he gets hot, he will be right there.
With many big names playing, bettors get a ton of value with the other guys including Graeme DeLaet (+6,000). He’s coming off a T2 at the Barclays which came after two missed cuts, so he could be getting hot at the right time. That was his sixth Top 10 of the season and, while he missed the cut here last year, he’s a much better player this year. His rankings of first in total driving and first in ball striking proves that.
Recommended tournament win five pack at the Deutsche Bank Championship (all for one unit)
Jason Day (+1,800)
Webb Simpson (+2,500)
Keegan Bradley (+3,000)
Brandt Snedeker (+3,000)
Graeme DeLaet (+6,000)
2012 Record to date after 36 events: +51.6 Units
2013 Record to date after 32 events: -45.4 Units