With the British Open still fresh and the Olympic tournament on the horizon, it's no surprise that the 3M Open has drawn one of the weaker PGA Tour fields in recent memory.
Just seven of the Top-40 players in the world will tee it up at TPC Twin Cities in Minneapolis — though there are still a handful of big names bettors will undoubtedly be drawn to this week. At the top of the list is Dustin Johnson, who is coming off an impressive T8 at the Open Championship and will be looking to build on that performance after withdrawing from last year's 3M Open following an opening-round 78.
We preview the field, break down the course and give our golf picks, predictions, and best bets for the 3M Open, which runs from July 22-25.
3M Open betting stats that matter
You might look at the course design and wonder if you've wandered into some sort of alternate SimGolf universe.
You'll be hard-pressed to find a course with more hazards than this one — 12 of 18 holes feature water, but it's mostly just to add to the scenery, and there are enough bunkers to house all of Daytona Beach (not really, but it's still fun to imagine). This course is one of the tamest on tour if you can keep your tee shots on line, and should handsomely reward those accurate drives as well as solid iron play (as it did last year, with SG: Tee-to-Green a significant indicator of success).
Bentgrass greens are in play this week, which favor those who are strong putters in general. SG: Putting will be a significant stat for this week, since scoring is expected to be high. Consider the other notable putting-related stats, as well as greens in regulation, when putting together your bets for the week.
3M Open outright winner bets
DJ might have just three Top-10 results over his last 12 appearances, but in this watered-down field, he's still the heavy favorite at +750 to earn his first PGA Tour triumph since the Masters last November. Bettors are looking at a considerable gap between DJ and the next tier, which features Louis Oosthuizen and Tony Finau at +1,600 and Patrick Reed at +2,000. Matthew Wolff, the 2019 tournament champion, rounds out the Top five at +2,800.
Who will win the 3M Open? Here are our best picks:
Tony Finau (+1,600)
We picked Finau to prevail here last year, and he very nearly did, putting together a 65-66-69-68 performance en route to a third-place finish, three shots back of Thompson. Finau has exceeded 1.5 strokes gained per round on this course and is coming off a momentum-building T15 showing at the Open Championship following two straight missed cuts. It has been a bit of a scattered year for Finau, but returning to TPC Twin Cities could be just what he needs to get back in the win column.
Cameron Tringale (+3,500)
Tringale has a lot working in his favor here, as he ranks 21st on the PGA Tour in SG: Putting for the season (0.496) and just outside the Top 40 in SG: Approach (0.425). He finished tied with Finau at 16-under in last year's tournament, and his T26 performance at Royal St. George's continues a trend reversal for a player who used to struggle mightily in majors. He has a game that is well-suited for this course, and in a weaker-than-average field, that becomes even more of an advantage.
3M Open matchup predictions
Matthew Wolff Over Bubba Watson (-110)
It has been a challenging year for the 22-year-old Wolff, who has made it to the weekend in just three of his last seven events. But like Finau, a return to TPC Twin Cities might very well turn the tide. He carded a tremendous 21-under score in his 2019 victory, and followed that up with a 12th-place finish last year. If he can get his driver issues sorted out, there's no reason why Wolff shouldn't best Watson, who shot 67-74 to miss the cut in his only prior visit last year.
3M Open prop bets
Dustin Johnson Top-10 Finish (+100)
DJ is still playing at a high level despite his recent string of disappointing results, with no clear weaknesses in his game. And there's plenty of additional motivation for Johnson this week after struggling at TPC Twin Cities a year ago. We're not ready to proclaim him the winner, but even a strong (if unspectacular) showing this week should be enough for Johnson to put himself near the top of the Sunday leaderboard. And this is a great payout for a Top-10 DJ result no matter how he's playing.
Adam Hadwin Top-20 Finish (+333)
Current form is not in Hadwin's favor here. The Canadian has missed three consecutive cuts, and seven of his past 10 overall. And ranking 141st in SG: Off-the-Tee and 186th in SG: Approach certainly won't help his case for a Top-20 finish this week. But he posted a fourth-place result in his previous visit to TPC Twin Cities, and his performance on the greens so far this season (26th in SG: Putting) gives us a little more confidence. It's an underdog play, for sure, but we're on it.
Charles Howell III to Make Cut (-200)
Howell's inconsistency has been frustrating, but this still feels like one of the safer cut picks of the week that still pays out at a reasonable number. Howell is coming off a solid T23 showing at his previous event, the John Deere Classic, and he has made the most of his two visits to TPC Twin Cities with third- and 23rd-place finishes. Look for Howell to take advantage of the weaker field and at least make it to the weekend.
3M Open betting card
- Tony Finau Outright (+1,600)
- Cameron Tringale Outright (+3,500)
- Matthew Wolff Over Bubba Watson (-110)
- Dustin Johnson Top-10 Finish (+100)
- Adam Hadwin Top-20 Finish (+333)
- Charles Howell III to Make Cut (-200)
Picks made 07/21/2021 at 7:55 a.m. ET.
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