Select Page

Whether it’s your first-time reading, or you’re a seasoned vet, this article goes up and down the DraftKings or Fan Duel’s salary list, and talks about plays and strategies that could be “against the grain.” If you’re not a golfer, putting against the grain is a reference to the way a green is cut and if one is going “against the grain”, you’re putting away from it.

The article below is meant to be a guiding tool in creating positive variance. Winning a GPP of any size is a difficult task, especially ones with 40k-plus entries. Each of my big wins have come by going “against the grain” with some players,and pairing them with the right chalk. In the pursuit of GPP glory, it’s crucial to preserve your bankroll, to have the ability to even play in the big GPPs, thus I urge you to start with @scottimac11’s Making the Cut which teaches cash game principles. Don’t forget to start your research with Tee 2 Green — First Cut, as it’s where i start my week off, every week. In today’s game some courses fit perfectly for some golfers, while other just don’t. @grantbushman gives you a great perspective.

Recap of Last Week’s Article:

BANG BANG!! Two weeks in a row I’ve highlighted an under-owned winner. This week it was Stenson as it read “If my projections are accurate how can you not play Stenson”… He came in around 15% which is just perfect for a winner…If you roster him that is.

First – Stenson- WOOOO
Second – Saunders with Glover and Lowry- nice nice there.
Third -I called for an Ollie/Tway stack with either Sabbs or Wereski…and let me tell you the MC from Tway cost me dearly with exactly these stacks… too bad, but still, all those lineups cashed, I jut didn’t win the big one.
Fourth – Camilo Villegas was darn good as well… if you had tried to make lineups with just the guys from each of these categories you would have done pretty well.

Personal DraftKings Results:

In a matter of full transparency, I am going to post my results weekly, and give you my top four owned guys across the board. If you’ve been following me since my days with Fantasy Golf Insider, you know it’s important that I implement some, if not all my suggested plays.

Core Players in the Dogleg: Cauley/Stenson/Lowry/Tway/Ollie

Top Results: Well what looked to be a dismal, dreadful week after the cut on Friday, turned into an ok “loss” i returned back about 75% of my investment, which for me on a loosing week, is fantastic… I TOTALLY whiffed on my two big buy ins (1500’s this week) but had some pretty good Dogleg results even with 5/6 on most of the teams. My top lineup in fact was a 5/6 mdfed… See below. A simple play Webb Simpson over Bill Haas would have earned me a cool 25K and second place….oh the what if game… Fun to play isn’t it?

DraftKings Contests This Week:

CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK BEGINS This week its the crazy 8’s week.

Mass-Entry GPP

$888 Mega 8’s Championship 500K GTD (100K to first) Max entry of 18 lineups here for this big dollar GPP. This one is a medium payout scale paying out 20% to first place and has a total of 625 lineups. 

$188 Medium 8’s Championsihp 100K GTD (15K to first) This contest features a 15 entry max and has a nice flat payout at 15% going to first place. 591 total lineups. 

$8 Mini 8’s Championship 250K GTD (25K to first) This 150 entry max contest has been a staple each week since the 20 entry max series have been released. A flat payout scale with 10% going to first place. 36,700 total lineups. 

$33- 550K Dog Leg (100K to first) 50k gets knocked off the prize pool as DK pumps some money into the mega 8’s championship. 100k first to this 150 entry contest. 19267 Total Lineups 

Limited Entry GPPs:

$5,300- $100K Thunderdome ( 1 entry 40K to first) Just always like to throw this in to allow ya’ll to see what I’m chasing as my top dollar entry for the week. 20 Total Lineups
$1,500- 102K Country Club (3 entry max 25K to first) 40K is pulled from the contest as the try and promote the Mega 8’s in stead. 25k to first.  72 Total Lineups
$150- 12K Driving Range (Single Entry 2.5K to first) A much steeper payout then the next contest on here, this single entry 150 buy in is very top-heavy paying out over 35% of the prize pool to the top 2 spots. Still a nice payout for the gamer that wins. 88 Total Entrants
$100- 20K Long Drive( 3 entry max 3K to first) This mid price buy in is a great way for people to start to test the waters in the higher dollar buy ins. Good for someone who plays about $500 per week. 222 Total Lineups
$20- PGA $25K Scramble (3 entry max- 2.5K to first) Back down to normal for the week field here. 1445 Total Lineups 
$12- PGA $25K Albatross (Single entry- 2.5K to first) The third of 4 limited entry GPP’s that DK has fallen in love with. I’m for it. 2408 Total Entrants
$5- PGA $20K Eagle (3 entry max- 2K to first) a loss of 30k  to the eagle this week, but DK still loves the flat payout here.4705 Total Lineups
$4- PGA $215K Fore (20 Entry max- 12.5K to first) I’ve mentioned this enough, but one last time, this is DK’s crown jewel with golf right now. 5% of the prize pool to first, allows them to pay more people out, keeping people engaged. 63,235 Total Lineups…Wowzers…
$3- PGA 40K Birdie (20 entry max- 2K to first) who knows why DK does what they does but they take 10 away from the fore and add it to the birdie this week. That bumps first place to 2k this week. The flat payout structure continues for these limited entry GPPs. 15,686 Total Lineups.

Fantasy Golf World Championship

This week marks the start of the FWGC where 125 lineups will compete for a top prize of 200K. For all those that would like to follow along @scottimac11 and my progress here is the gamecenter link! CLICK HERE

Player Focus- Northern Trust 

***Note that just because a golfer is listed as part of the Game Theory Analysis, it does not mean that I am recommending playing them unless specified otherwise. ***

$9,000 and up: We adjust for the lack of players priced above 10K. Now 10 players fit this mold.

Highest Owned: Dustin Johnson-25 +%

Lowest Owned: Rory McIlroy

GTA (Game Theory Analysis): This is the first time, at least that I can recall, that two guys not named DJ or Rory are priced higher than spieth…Shocked I am that DK decided to put Mats and Fowler above Spieth. My guess is that has something to do with recent ownership percentagess. If you look back over the last couple events, Fowler and Mats have severely out paced Mr. Spieth in terms of ownership, hey and in fact, performance as well BUT this course seems to set up much better for Jordan. We have no course history to go off of this week as its the Tour’s first stop at #Glenoak #Club but the comparisons are plentiful. Some have talked about Augusta because of the run-off’s and green complxes, while other’s have talked about a neighboring course Bethpage Black because of its tightness and hole set up. For more info on the course be sure to check out @grantbushman’s awesome course preview article this week “The First Cut”. It’s also a par 70, but on the rather long side at 7300 yards or more, par 5 scoring won’t be too much of a factor. In terms of approach shots, the Cheatsheet showcases a few golfers that might fit well with over 75% of the par 4’s coming in at under 450 yards. Spieth, Matsuyama, Stenson, and DJ are all guys inside the top 13 on tour this year in terms of approach shots from 125-150. Back to game theory now, I suspect the love for Matsuyama will continue, and now with DJ priced at 10,800 i suspect MANY people will flock their as well. It’ll be really interesting to see if people go back to the PGA Champ Justin Thomas, who with a FedEx Cup win, would be the leading candidate for player of the year. Is it finally time for some Jason Day love?? He’s had an awful year, and most of the DFS-Golf world knows about it as they haven’t rostered him over 10% for quite some time. HOWEVER, take out that disastrous disgusting display of course management at the PGA and he gives JT a run for his money on Sunday. Brooks Koepka and Paul Casey round out this price category and i suspect will be around the 20% ownership level. Lastly, what to do with Rory Mcilroy…Is he hurt? Is he just having a bad year? Is he making excuses? Lastly, what does it do to his ownership? My best guess, it hurts it. Quite a bit. Certianly a reason

The Top Play: Well if Spieth comes in around 15% again HOW CAN YOU NOT PLAY HIM? If this course sets up anything like Augusta, we know his track record there, and if it has any comparison to Bethpage, well he placed in the top 10 last year there! For ATG purposes I’ll pair him with Jason Day, but can’t avoid Rickie either, so I’ll do a few stacks of each. Top one is with Day though.


10 golfers fit this tier.
Highest Owned: Louis Oost

Lowest Owned: Rose?

GTA: 10 golfers fit this mold, and for the first time in a long time, not one is sticking out more than the other for me…at least in terms of ownership. This seems like a really low price for Jon Rahm, and maybe people will flock there, but, Louis Oost is coming off a great performance and has (what we think) is good comparable course history. Another golfer that fits that exact same set of criteria as Louis is Patrick Reed. At 8600 he could come as the top owned guy, but with other golfers like Kuchar and Berger priced right near him, I can’t see ownership getting too high. I suspect all guys (with the exception of Justin Rose)  will be owned very similarly. To create some positive variance here. you are definitely going to need to overweight one of them. UPSTART Hatless Ollie somehow in a stacked field finds himself priced HIGHER than last week…crazy…but we deal with what DK gives us, and i think that should take some ownership away from him.

The Top Play: Patrick Reed looked in control at the PGA Champ and seems to be peaking again just in time for the President’s Cup. Although i expect him to be  somewhat high owned, pairing him with someone like JDay or Spieth should help create some variance against the field.

$7,999– $7,000:

48 golfers fit this category.

Highest Owned: Tony Finau
Lowest Owned: at least 10 guys will be under 10% owned in this category. I’ll highlight a few I like below.

GTA: Why is Patrick Cantlay priced above Tony Finau?? “Ugh” “Exasperated Sigh” “Rolls Eyes” “Looks of Disdain” that frustrates me. Well he is, and actually should help keep Cantlay’s o% down…However i’m not quite sure if he’s a great fit here… but he has shown us the ability to rack up DK points and compete at the highest of levels. Ryan Moore I’m sure will garner a TON of attention at the 7100 level but nothing like the buzz going on about Tony Finau at 7300… At that price he’ll come in close to 30-35%. Look to guys like Richy Werenski ,JB Holmes and Lucas Glover for some positive variance. There are a few other guys that will surely be rostered, and at a high clip, including Molinari and Charley Hoffman. Hoffman right now holds the 10th and final automatic qualifying spot for the Presidents cup team, so beyond the 10 million bucks he could win if he has a great playoff, he’s in line to make the team. Kyle Stanley is finally back to an appropriate price but has fallen off quite a bit, and will be one of those guys under 10% owned. In terms of DK ppg Jason Dufner comes in averaging a solid 66 points and shouldn’t get any higher than 10-13%. In term’s of looking at Bethpage as a comparable course Ryan Moore, Tony Finau, and Sean O’Hair are among the notables that played well @ Bethpage last year.

The Top Play: Sticking with the theme of talent, and the added benefit of a low ownership, Cantlay could be a feature this week. I’d like to pair him with molinari/Holmes/Moore/Werenski with holmes and Werenski for the ATG stacks.

$6,999 and Below

A Ton of golfers fit his category.

Projections: Grace & Schwartzel

GTA & Top Play: After a couple weeks of getting a way from “lay-ups” DK is back at it giving no love to South Africa. Both Schwatzel and Grace are priced at 6900 and well below the norm. We saw DK do this earlier in the year for a run of tournaments, and i thought it had stopped, but alas, its back. The nice thing that when this happens it really sucks the ownership away from everyone else in this category. Guys like Tway/Brown/Watney*good CH/NA/ and others. Another name that is interesting here is Sung Kang as he’s had success at Bethpage in the past and can score with the best of them. He hasn’t played much recently, but did make the cut at the PGA shooting 3 good rounds but did finish with a 76 on Sunday. J.J. Spaun also had a great finish and overall good week last week in North Carolina and is worth a flyer. If you want to roster grace and schwartzel, which I can understand why, try to pair them up with other guys mentioned like (day,Cantlay,spaun).

Thats it for now guys… Come check out my synopsis and leader-board tomorrow in the ” Winning Element”. A collaborative piece by all of us here at Tour Level/ @dfsgolfer23 @scottmac11 @grantbushman and @hump_bumgardner