FanDuel PGA: Valero Texas Open Picks and Strategy

FanDuel PGA: Valero Texas Open Picks and Strategy

This article is part of our FanDuel PGA DFS Picks series.

Valero Texas Open

Course: TPC San Antonio Oaks Course (7,435 yards, par 72)
Purse: $8,900,000
Winner: $1,602,000 and 500 FedExCup points

Tournament Preview

One final spot in the Masters is up for grabs at this week's Valero Texas Open with a victory by a player who is not otherwise exempt. Since this event moved to the week before the first major of the year, we have seen a couple notable Hail Mary's that include Corey Conners Monday qualifying and then winning the 2019 Texas Open to get into the Masters, then last year J.J. Spaun notching his first PGA Tour win in San Antonio to get the invite down Magnolia Lane. Leading the charge of non-exempt players this week is Rickie Fowler, who missed out on qualifying via the Top 50 in the OWGR by nine spots. Fowler has been on a roll this season and is looking to return to the Masters for the first time since 2020. On the other hand you have a handful of players who are locked into the Masters field and are looking to get one final tune up. Those would include the likes of Tyrrell Hatton, Conners, Si Woo Kim and Hideki Matsuyama

The Texas Open is the sixth oldest professional golf tournament worldwide. This year will be the 101st anniversary of the first Texas Open back in 1922 won by Bob MacDonald. The event has rotated between courses, but it has always been held in the San Antonio area. The TPC San Antonio Oaks Course has been the host course for the Valero Texas Open since 2010. We've seen a wide range of scoring over that time with a winning number of 8-under-par in 2011 and 2014, and then 20-under-par by Conners in 2019. Arnold Palmer and Justin Leonard have the most wins in the Texas Open with three a piece. 

What has made the Oaks Course play tricky over the years in the gusty Texas winds. Players should have to deal with a fair amount of gusts in the first and second rounds, but the weekend looks to be a little more consistent. Expect a thunderstorm to hit at some point during the tournament, which may halt play for a bit, but also soften up a course that can get very firm. I'd expect to see a winning score in the 14-under to 18-under range this week. 

Recent Champions

2022 - J.J. Spaun (-13)
2021 - Jordan Spieth (-18)
2020 - None
2019 - Corey Conners (-20)
2018 - Andrew Landry (-17)
2017 - Kevin Chappell (-12)
2016 - Charley Hoffman (-12)
2015 - Jimmy Walker (-11)
2014 - Steven Bowditch (-8)
2013 - Martin Laird (-14)

Key Stats to Victory

  • SG: Approach
  • GIR Percentage
  • Scrambling 
  • SG: Off-the-Tee

Champion's Profile

TPC San Antonio is another ball-strikers paradise. If you are in control of your ball, you can really gain a lot of shots on the rest of the field who may struggled around these tricky green complexes. The key off-the-tee is to just avoid some of the deep fairways bunkers that can make getting to the green on your second shot very difficult. The rough is not ideal here, but it certainly is not as penal as all the Florida courses we just played. From there it will be all about iron play. We'll see a lot of different types of clubs used into these greens with par-4's from 347 yards to 481 yards on the card. A lot of the greens feature multiple tiers and being dialed in with distances can be the difference in a short birdie putt and a really difficult two-putt. A quality short game will also be required to find success at TPC San Antonio, as a number of greens are perched up and missing them will leave a delicate chip off a tight lie or a deep greenside bunker shot. 

FanDuel Value Picks

The Chalk

Corey Conners ($11,900)

The hope here is that people see the price on Conners and look in a different direction. His numbers this season are a little down across the board, but this guy has been an absolute ball-striking machine over the last three years and there's nobody else in this field that I would trust more on a course that demands precision ball-striking. The 2019 Texas Open winner has notched top-25 finishes in six of his ten starts this season. 

Chris Kirk ($11,100)

Kirk has struggled a bit in his last three starts since he won the Honda Classic, but TPC San Antonio is a great place for him to get right. Kirk has racked up four top-15 finishes in eight career starts here. The 37-year-old drives it straight and also ranks 33rd in SG: Approach, 26th in SG: Around-the-Green and fifth in putts per GIR. Add it all up and Kirk is 16th on the PGA Tour in SG: Total. 

Matt Kuchar ($10,600)

Kuchar in his career at TPC San Antonio has been money. He is 10-for-10 with six top-15 finishes, including a runner-up last year. Kuchar has had a pretty solid season at age 44 going 7-for-11, but every time he made the weekend he finished inside the top-35. The veteran scored a T9 at the WGC-Match Play last week and tied Tiger Woods for most matches won in that event with 36. Kuchar is gaining strokes across the board this season and tops the Tour in scrambling. 

Matt Wallace ($10,500)

This goes against a rule a lot of people have of taking a guy the week after a win, but Wallace fits the model too well to scroll over him at this price. The Englishman led the field in birdies en route to a win in Punta Cana and was also top-five in scrambling. That was Wallace's fifth top-30 finish in his last eight starts worldwide. The key for Wallace will be keeping it in play with the driver because he 29th in SG: Approach and second in SG: Around-the-Green this season. He also scored a solo third two years ago at TPC San Antonio. 

Longer Shots with Value

Nicolai Hojgaard ($9,700)

Hojgaard narrowly missed out on his first PGA Tour win last week and had to settle for second behind Wallace. The Dane has played quite well in Europe this season with now five top-15s in his last seven starts worldwide. He should be a great fit for the Oaks Course as he ranks sixth on the DP World Tour in SG: Off-the-Tee and was first last week in Punta Cana in driving distance and GIR percentage. 

Ben Martin ($9,200)

I'm going to keep riding with Martin because he keeps putting up results. He has made the cut in five straight events with three of those being top-15 finishes, including his T8 last week in Punta Cana. Martin has shown to be a really strong iron player this season ranking Top 20 in both SG: Approach and GIR percentage. The 35-year-old has solid experience at TPC San Antonio making the cut four out of the five times he has played. 

Sam Stevens ($8,700)

Stevens is another man who contended last week in Punta Cana. He ended up in a tie for third place after holding a share of the 54-hole lead. That was the third top-15 finish for the PGA Tour rookie in his last six starts. Stevens has proven to be a quality ball-striker ranking 30th in SG: Off-the-Tee, 26th in GIR percentage and 20th in proximity to the hole this season. This might be his first trip around TPC San Antonio, but Stevens has certainly shown a lot of upside compared to most of the other players in this range. 

Charley Hoffman ($8,500)

It doesn't matter how Hoffman has been playing, when he gets on property at TPC San Antonio he picks up so much confidence. Hoffman is 11-for-12 here with a a whopping nine top-15 finishes. That includes a win in 2016 and runner-ups in 2011, 2019 and 2021. The thing that has been poor for Hoffman this season has been the putter, but familiar greens like this should improve that quite a bit this week. He's still hitting it far enough and his irons close enough to contend at age 46. 

Strategy Tips This Week

Based on a Standard $60K Salary Cap

Compared to some of the other recent non-designated full-field events, this one is a lot less top heavy. Pretty much every top player is electing to take this week off to rest and prepare for the Masters. Hatton (hand) and Matsuyama (neck) both have minor injury concerns and I just feel better fading both, especially given their price. Looking at the weather, it appears that the Early/Late draw will have to deal with less of those gusty winds, although one thunderstorm that pops up could completely ruin that strategy. I don't think the difference in waves will be as drastic as we've seen at a couple other events this year, but if you're making multiple lineups I think it could be worth making all six players in one entry from the Early/Late wave. 

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The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Ryan Andrade plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: Ku_Bball_Fan, FanDuel: ku_bball_fan.
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Ryan  Andrade
Ryan has covered golf, college basketball, and motorsports for RotoWire since 2016. He was nominated for "DFS Writer of the Year" in 2021 by the FSWA.
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