US Open 2020
It's US Open at Winged Foot week and we couldn't be more thrilled to help you win all the money on DraftKings or Fanduel. We're going to look at 2 extremely popular names across DFS contests and why you could justify staying away. More importantly, I'm going to tell you about 2 other players with as much upside at significantly less projected ownership. Ownership leverage and equal or greater upside from the players we're pivoting away from is the name of the game every week for the Pivot Point article.
As of Wednesday afternoon, ownership appears to be rather spread out based on our favorite sites to reference. There isn't anyone projected over 25% and only 5 or 6 that could reach 20%. When this type of spread occurs, it generally could mean that you can just play your favorites regardless of ownership unless ALL of your favorites are over 15% or so. You're still going to need 2 or 3 sub 10% guys in your lineups though for leverage in large GPP tournaments. Weeks like this make it hard to fully justify a stud player projected at 20+, but here we go...
Tony Finau (16%) / Patrick Cantlay (11%)
Tony Finau has been feast or famine in US Opens with 2 missed cuts, a T5 and T14. His missed cut in 2016 was at the extremely difficult Oakmont. When justifying why one should avoid Finau at Winged Foot, you have to start with his prowess of fairway finding. It sucks like Cardi B in a NBA locker room. In his last 20 events, he's only been positive in Fairways Gained (a proprietary Fantasy National stat comparing accuracy relative to the field and course) in 4 events. He's breaking even putting on poa greens (bent his best surface). Word on the street is that Tony is going to be aggressive off the tee this week and hit plenty of drivers. I just don't believe that's the smartest way to win at Winged Foot when even par is likely to get you the trophy.
I mean...Patrick Cantlay is still a premium striker of balls...is he not? The kid has never missed a cut at a US Open. He's coming off a T12 at the difficult Olympia Fields, T43 at the PGA Champ, and T32 at Memorial under brutal conditions. He's very familiar and comfy on poa greens. Cantlay has real winning upside at Winged Foot. Our "unnamed, accurate secret sportsbook" has him basically even money in a Head to Head matchup against the popular Daniel Berger, and a huge favorite over a guy like Jason Day. You could make worse choices in this range and possibly sub 10% ownership.
Matt Fitzpatrick (16%) / Gary Woodland (10%)
Matt Fitzpatrick is nothing like Tony Finau as he finds a ton of fairways, but doesn't hit it near as far given his wee stature. However, his irons and scrambling numbers since the restart have not been as good as Tony's. Regardless of hitting fairways, with the speed and undulation of these greens, players WILL miss greens with approach shots. Scrambling is something I'm weighing heavily this week at Winged Foot, and Fitz is ranked 101 in SG: Around the green over the last 24 rounds. Historically, scrambling has always been the glaring weakness in his game. Oh...and his worst putting surface over his career has been poa. I actually believe his floor is higher than Finau's this week, but his upside to win or place top 5 is low. With so few birdies this week, finish position points will be key. It would be a good idea to look at your DFS lineups and consider at least 5 of your players to have real winning upside if possible.
Ok...so I have to confess. I did not like Gary at all early in the week, but I've warmed up after hearing his press conference yesterday. He's been at Winged Foot since the weekend prepping and his head space seemed especially positive (and not in the fake, cliche kind of way). He mentioned his strategy was NOT to pound driver here, but to his his patented 2 iron frequently to set up his approach shot. As the defending US Open champion, he's flying under the radar for someone that could obviously win this tournament at sub $8K on DraftKings. He's coming off a T33 at Olympia Fields and T22 at Memorial in terms of recent finishes at very difficult golf courses. His best putting surface is poa. It's all about short game for the Kansas Jayhawk. But the fact that he's been here since the weekend getting a feel for this rough and these greens seems appealing to me.