2024 Valspar Championship Preview

What a finish to the 50th playing of the Players Championship. Scottie Scheffler shot a final round record 64 to come from 5 back to beat a star studded leaderboard. If you are a golf fan and you haven’t seen the final round, do yourself a favor and take a look. It is a round you’ll remember for a lifetime.

This week the Tour makes its last stop on the Florida swing at the Valspar Championship. The event is once again being held on the Copperhead Course at the Innisbrook Resort in Palm Harbor, Florida. Copperhead is a 7,340 yard par 71 that regularly plays as one of the toughest tracks on Tour. Although it is a Par 71, there are 4 par 5’s and 5 par 3’s. 3 of the par 5’s are the only 3 holes that average below par. Narrow fairways boarded by 3.75 inch rough are tree lined with multiple dog legs. Combined with significant elevation changes, many tee shots will be “less than driver.” Water comes into play on 6 holes. The green complexes are small, undulating and surrounded by bunkers. The Bentgrass Poa Trivialis greens typically run 12-12.5 on the Stimpmeter.

While we don’t have to worry about Scottie going three in a row this week, there is a strong field at Copperhead. Players runners-up Xander Schauffele and Brian Harman lead the field that includes two time Valspar winner Sam Burns as well as Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Cam Young, Sungjae Im and Tony Finau.

As discussed above, with the tree lined dog legs, this is not a bomber’s course. Many competitors will choose less than driver off the tee as location for approach shots is paramount for success. Historically, SG APP (175-200) and SG APP (200+) are significantly higher (a combined 52%) at Copperhead than the Tour average. Other key stats this week will be SG Scrambling, SG ATG (Around the Green) and Bogey Avoidance.

This is my first tournament preview so I must say that while in the past I’ve had decent success in both golf betting and DFS, past results are no guarantee of future success. That being said, nobody has run colder this PGA season, so take my recommendations and do the exact opposite.

The weather this week must be taken into consideration. There is a ridiculous storm moving out of the Midwest into the Gulf of Mexico. Thek ONLY sure bet of the week is that the cut will NOT take place on Friday. For DFS and “One and Done”, I’m taking the unusual position of choosing golfers from the late/early wave. The forecast for the afternoon Thursday is benign. Friday into Saturday morning looks awful. The late/early guys might very well find themselves with a solid advantage.

I ran a model using the criteria I mentioned above and focused on golfers in the late/early wave. My “One and Done” this week is Nick Taylor. The competitors I’ll be using on Draft Kings include Taylor, Doug Ghim, Brian Harmon, Matt NeSmith and Andrew Novak.