Yahoo DFS Golf: BMW Championship Picks and Strategy

Yahoo DFS Golf: BMW Championship Picks and Strategy

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

BMW Championship

Wilmington, Delaware
Wilmington Country Club - Par 71 - 7,534 yards
Field - 68 entrants
Purse - $15M

The Preview

A dramatic ending to the first leg of the FedExCup Playoffs produced a worthy champion as Will Zalatoris finally emerged victorious at TPC Southwind for his maiden win on the PGA Tour, defeating a previously slumping Sepp Straka in what became quite a memorable three-hole playoff. Those positioned inside the top 70 of the Eligibility Points List by Sunday night kept their 2021-22 seasons alive as they now head to the BMW Championship, where the field is limited to just 68 entrants due to the absences of Cameron Smith (hip) and Tommy Fleetwood (not injury related). 

Designed by Robert Trent Jones in the 1950s, the South Course at Wilmington Country Club features enormous bentgrass greens, four-inch rough and a plethora of bunkers, while a pair of the venue's par-5s measure north of 630 yards and a trio of its par-3s surpass the 200-yard mark. The massive putting surfaces emphasize the importance of approach proximity in order to avoid three putts, but players should be able to pound their drivers often around this layout as length becomes an advantage. As defending champion Patrick Cantlay explained in his press conference Tuesday, this course seems very distance-biased, albeit narrower than Caves Valley where he won last year. The weather appears unlikely to factor into any sort of tee-time advantage, so Wilmington should provide a fair and relatively easy test as the battle for a trip to East Lake ensues. 

Recent Champions

2021 - Patrick Cantlay (Caves Valley)
2020 - Jon Rahm (Olympia Fields)
2019 - Justin Thomas (Medinah)
2018 - Keegan Bradley (Aronimink)
2017 - Marc Leishman (Conway Farms)
2016 - Dustin Johnson (Crooked Stick)
2015 - Jason Day (Conway Farms)
2014 - Billy Horschel (Cherry Hills)
2013 - Zach Johnson (Conway Farms)
2012 - Rory McIlroy (Crooked Stick)

Key Stats to Victory

SG: Approach
Driving distance
SG: Putting

Yahoo Value Picks 

Based on $200 salary cap

Cream of the Crop

Will Zalatoris - $41

Dipping down from the obvious super-elites at $45-plus, the aforementioned Zalatoris got the monkey off his back and proved to the haters of his wonky putting stroke that he can actually roll the rock on occasion, especially the further he gets from the hole. He's actually third on the entire Tour in Approach Putt Performance while leaving his lags to an average of two feet, but he's also 20th in Birdie or Better conversion percentage. From a DFS perspective, Zalatoris hopefully benefits from gambler's fallacy to keep his exposure in check at such an affordable price this week, as the casuals think a repeat performance becomes less likely, even though he's still No. 1 in SG: Approach, second in SG: Tee-to-Green and 12th in driving distance. 

Sam Burns - $41

Wilmington Country Club seems like the type of course that would provide a solid bounceback opportunity for a player like Burns, who showed signs of life with a T20 in Memphis where he gained 4.4 strokes with his irons en route to a T20. This marked his best finish since the RBC Canadian Open in early June, having struggled from the Travelers Championship through the Open. For good reason, I think Collin Morikawa and Viktor Hovland are going to combine to soak up a healthy amount of rostership at $42, but a pivot to Burns also represents a chance to get a bit more unique near the top. This certainly worked for us in a similar instance with Jon Rahm last week. 

Tony Finau - $39

Despite tying for fifth last week in Memphis on the heels of back-to-back victories at the 3M Open and the Rocket Mortgage Classic, Finau's salary remains unchanged at just $39 with 13 names listed above the hottest player on the planet. It's especially blasphemous that he's priced below Billy Horschel ($40), who's failed to post a top-20 while missing three cuts throughout six worldwide starts since his random spike week at the Memorial Tournament in early June. Throughout his past 24 measured rounds, Finau is second to none in both SG: T2G and par-4 efficiency. Additionally, bentgrass is his most favorable putting surface.

Glue Guys

Cameron Young - $36

As a prototype for expected success at Wilmington, Young has gotten steamed all the way up to outright odds of 22/1 in the betting market, and that popularity figures to accompany him on the DFS side of things as well after he gained a collective nine strokes off the tee and with his irons last week at TPC Southwind. Having notched the worst putting performance of his career in Memphis, positive regression with the flat stick should be on the horizon as he ranks sixth on Tour in overall putting average and seventh in one-putt percentage this season.

Joaquin Niemann - $35

Niemann played his final 54 holes in 10-under-par last week at the FedEx St. Jude Championship, where he ranked third among the field in SG: Approach and tallied 20 total birdies. He's 16th on Tour in SG: OTT and 24th in putting from inside 10 feet. Rostership-wise I think Niemann finds himself in a bit of a dead zone because he obviously won't be included in stars-and-scrubs lineups, while gamers that target the middle ranges likely favor the aforementioned Young ($36), Sungjae Im ($37), Joohyung Kim ($33) and maybe even Max Homa ($33). 

Aaron Wise - $27

Wise continued his steady production last week in Memphis as he recorded two scores of 67 or better en route to the T31 finish, but now he's a whole $7 cheaper. Wise ranks ninth in overall proximity, 19th in SG: OTT and even a respectable 27th in SG: Putting over his last 24 measured rounds. 

Bargain Bin

Cam Davis - $20

The $20 minimum salary continues to be littered with gems at this point in the season, beginning with Davis and his five consecutive top-20 finishes from the John Deere Classic through the FedEx St. Jude Championship. He does most of his damage in the ball-striking department, gaining an average of 6.7 strokes from tee to green per measured event throughout this recent stretch, but he also just picked up 3.2 strokes with the flat stick in Memphis. Over his last 24 rounds, Davis ranks third in Prox: 175-200, fifth in Prox: 200-plus, eighth in driving distance and 12th in Birdie or Better percentage. 

Trey Mullinax - $20

Mullinax, who followed up his win at the alternate-field Barbasol Championship with a top-25 finish at the Open Championship, impressed again this past week at TPC Southwind, where he ranked fourth in SG: T2G despite hitting only 29 of 56 fairways in regulation. The ball-striking clinic led him to 19 total birdies and an eagle, and ultimately a T5. Extrapolating to a 24-round sample, Mullinax is second in Prox: 200-plus, ninth in driving distance and 20th in three-putt avoidance.

Wyndham Clark - $20

Clark landed in this very section of the Rocket Mortgage Classic article late last month, when I described him as "kind of like the Walmart version of Cameron Young in the sense that he's also a bomber with a capable flat stick." Well, Clark went out and gained a combined 8.8 strokes off the tee and with his putter on the way to an eighth-place finish in Detroit, returning immense value at just $21 that week. The sentiment with Clark is similar again this week, while he's second to none in SG: Putting and seventh in driving distance over his last 24 rounds. Unrelated, but just a quick reminder that the absence of a 36-hole cut should inflate risk tolerance. A greater portion of the lowest-priced players are selected in an effort to allocate even more capital to the starpower up top, so tabbing multiple $20 guys won't be all that uncommon.

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. Bryce Danielson plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: brycedanielson99, FanDuel: brycedanielson99, Yahoo: RotoBOOM.
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Bryce Danielson
Bryce covers the PGA for RotoWire and provides input on the golf cheat sheet. He also contributes to the coverage for NFL, NBA and other sports.
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