John Deere Classic Recap


The trend of under-30 winners continued.

The trend of first-time winners continued.

The time for science is now!

As I have to remind some of you from time-to-time, this is a FANTASY GOLF column.

If you want the background on DeChambeau’s love for physics and the what not, you’ll find some* journos who have done the deep dive.

*all of them

I’m here for the fantasy golf.

Here’s what I wrote about DeChambeau in my preview:

Bryson DeChambeau: The last three weeks have proven that there’s something brewing under the Tam-O-shanter. He’s peeled off three consecutive top 30’s after a barren period that left even his staunchest supporters murmuring to themselves. His stats won’t blow you away but in a field such as this, I’ll gladly lean on a guy who’s improved his position three events in a row all inside T-27.

I’m trying to spot trends. I’m trying to find the guy BEFORE he pops. I’m trying to find winners.

Is part of DeChambeau’s story that he MC a billion times in a row? It sure is.

So is his past record.

He won the U.S. Amateur.

He won the NCAA individual championship at SMU.

I’ve borrowed a phrase from the English, “form is temporary, class is permament” and have used it multiple times in dissecting fantasy golf. Leaning on guys who have been-there, done-that will eventually come good. As DeChambeau remarked after his win he didn’t expect for it to take THIS long (40 starts) but he’s rewarded gamers who saw he was a no-brainer from day one.

I’m not saying he’ll be Jordan Spieth but his record suggests being Bryson DeChambeau might not be all bad either!

18 Things I Learned?

1.) JDC doesn’t mess around when identifying champions even though the track is hardly demanding. The list of winners since 2009 checks off some big boxes and this year wasn’t any exception. Usually a birdie-fest deepens the field, and I still believe that. The accurate who make the most putts is the formula for winning here.

2.) There were eight rounds over par in the top 25 as the NW winds on Thursday posed a different challenge. The top 43 players were double-digits under par so multiple rounds in the 70’s just don’t fly here. #GoLowYo.

3.) People that give a shit what size clubs or what kind of hat DeChambeau wears are EXACTLY the people I want to be going against in fantasy golf. If you’re that bothered by appearances rather than performance, I want you and your friends in my league. Never game angry or hold grudges unless you enjoy donating. Here are the facts for the week: He made 24 birdies and six bogeys while finishing second in Strokes Gained: Putting. He closed with 66 at QLN, 65 last week and 65 this week, closing with 30.

4.) Patrick Rodgers will be in the winner’s circle before you know it. Go take a look at his pedigree and tell me why he won’t. Being patient on the course and in fantasy land are different but similar. Rodgers won just over $1 million in 17 events in 2015 with a T-2 and solo third. He won almost $1.3 million in 28 events last year with a solo third and three other top 10’s. He’s won just over $1.3 million this season in 23 events with a solo second and three other top 10’s. I’ll patiently wait.

5.) With back-to-back top 10’s the last two years, putter supreme Wesley Bryan is a must-have here next year. He’s 30 under over his eight rounds and five of those rounds are 67 or lower including a pair of 64’s.

6.) Starting the week at No. 206 in the FEC standings Rick Lamb closed 63-66 for T-5. Like Rodgers he’s also from Indiana but he might not be in that same class. It’s his best finish on Tour on one of the easiest courses so be aware moving forward.

7.) After going all-in on Steve Stricker AND Zach Johnson last year, I was gun-shy entering this year. Stricker (and Brian Harman) should send Michael Kim a nice gift in the mail as his three-putt on Friday let in all the folks at two-under for the weekend. Stricker shot 65-64 to bail out his investors. Stricker’s form continues to impress as he adds T-5 to his T-16 at Augusta and T-16 at Erin Hills. Is this where I point out he was top 10 at Troon last year at The Open Championship?

8.) Johnson’s run of amazing continues here but his run on Tour still has gamers scratching their collective heads. This was his first top 10 since the first full-field event of the season at the Sony Open. He finished the week first in GIR and T-14 PPGIR.

9.) He defended his title at FESJC, MC at Erin Hills, lost in a playoff at Travelers and played in the final group for T-5 this week. All of you who had him in OAD, like me, appreciated that 50-something footer on the final hole to move up from T-10 to T-5. Yes, I get that he didn’t win but I’ll never complain with top fives.

10.) Scott Stallings is 27-under the last two years here and will deserve a look next season as well.

11.) Brian Harman and Berger in Group C in Yahoo! made for interesting playing this week. I got it wrong on Sunday as I thought Berger’s experience would prevail. Harman’s career-year rolls on.

12.) Just write down J.J. Henry for the Barracuda. He’s a former champ and trending properly.

13.) Hey look! Bud Cauley sighting! That’s five top 25’s in his last nine. Super talented as well and will be one of my favorites if he’s in the field at Barbasol.

14.) That’s four T-13’s or better in the last six for Chad Campbell. Ride that wave!

15.) Another without a win to his name that has been noisy this summer is Daniel Summerhays. As noted in here before he’s been in the final group twice since mid June and was T-12 this week. Knock. Knock. Knock.

16.) Gamers were frustrated with Danny Lee’s WD but that’s part of the risk-reward in our world. Dude played eight of the last nine entering the week dating back to THE PLAYERS and it just caught up with him. It’s unlucky and I’m over it as he’s been excellent.

17.) Ryan Moore’s return from injury ended in MC. Although I argued that this track was easy enough for a soft landing, I should have stuck with usual plan: DON’T TOUCH GUYS IN WEEK ONE COMING BACK. Stoopid.

18.) Poor Bubba Watson can’t find a track to get him on track as three TPC’s in a row couldn’t cure what ails him. Maybe a tight, windy Royal Birkdale will be the answer. #Not.

Coming this week:

Look for my Open Championship preview at later tomorrow afternoon.

I’ll post my full preview here after they stick it up, professional courtesy.

I will TRY to get around to the Barbasol Championship, time permitting, on Wednesday but obviously the angle this week is the third major of the season. At worst, I’ll give it the Greenbrier treatment where I wing it and see what happens for a laugh.

5 thoughts on “John Deere Classic Recap

  1. So after pronouncing the recap column dead, that is now 4 recaps in a row?!?! Keep them coming! I love to read all the little nuggets about who did and did not do well.


  2. Good evening Mike,
    I am on a deadline for 10 players most likely to make the cut. Contest is on the number of birdies made in each round. Would appreciate your opinion. My roster so far is top heavy with Euros.
    Andy Sullivan
    I also have from the US Rahm and Spieth
    Would appreciate your opinion on picks so far and any additions.
    I know I am missing DJ, Day and McIlroy but…..
    By the way, my deadline is tonite. Am a long time follower of you and Ned brown. You and Ned have been kind to me in other formats. Thanks,


    Liked by 1 person

    • Howdy Jim

      I’m also on a deadline to finish my preview for for tomorrow morning and will be up all night grinding.

      There’s not going to be many birdies made so figure out who’s on the right side of the draw!

      Lean on class players who excel in this major would be my advice.

      Try Ned as I’m swamped. I’m sorry.


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