The PGA Tour’s best return to TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, for The Players Championship. Rory McIlroy will defend his 2019 title at this event after the 2020 tournament was canceled following the first round due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below, we look at the 2021 Players Championship odds and make our PGA Tour picks and predictions to win.
Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm, ranked Nos. 2 and 3, respectively, in the Golfweek/Sagarin world rankings return to play after skipping last week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational. Johnson is this week’s top betting favorite at +1100, with Rahm, McIlroy and DeChambeau following suit at +1400. DeChambeau claimed victory last week.
Brooks Koepka is this week’s most notable absentee after withdrawing Sunday afternoon due to a knee injury. Matthew Wolff and Tiger Woods also won’t be participating this week.
2021 Players Championship picks – Favorite
Tyrrell Hatton +4000
Hatton is coming off a rollercoaster performance in his defense of his 2020 title at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He opened and closed the tournament with rounds of 5-over 77, but his second round of 67 was the second-best round of the day and his third-round 66 was Saturday’s fourth-best score.
He lost 1.22 strokes per round on the greens last week, but he gained 0.96 strokes per round around the greens with 2.52 Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green and 0.86 SG: Approach per round. He’s still averaging 0.33 SG: Putting per round for the 2020-21 season and should bounce back with the flat stick.
Though he missed the cut in each of the last two runnings of this event, he returns with his first PGA Tour victory and three other wins on the European Tour since then.
2021 Players Championship picks – Contender
Lee Westwood +9000
This is a staggering price for last week’s runner-up to DeChambeau. Westwood was third in last week’s field with 1.57 SG: Approach and led the field with 3.30 SG: Tee-to-Green per round. His shorter driver won’t be as much of a disadvantage against this week’s top contenders at the shorter venue as it was against DeChambeau Sunday at Bay Hill.
Westwood’s third PGA Tour event of 2021 will come at another familiar course. He has played 32 career rounds with an average of 1.48 strokes gained on the field per round at TPC Sawgrass. He hasn’t played here since 2017 but has three top-10 finishes in his last six appearances.
Last week’s third-place finisher, Corey Conners, is just +6600 to win this week.
2021 Players Championship picks – Long shot
Danny Willett +25000
Again, this price is far too high for Willett coming off a T-31 finish last week despite a Sunday 77 sending him tumbling down the leaderboard. The 2016 Masters champion has a poor course history at TPC Sawgrass with four missed cuts and a withdrawal since 2015, but this value can’t be ignored.
New to sports betting? A $10 bet on Hatton (+4000) will return a profit of $400. The same bet on Willett (+25000) would net a profit of $2,500 with a victory.
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