For the second of three events for the FedEx Cup Playoffs, the BMW Championship will be held this week at Caves Valley Golf Club (par 72, 7,542 yards) in Owings Mills, Maryland. Only the top 70 players in the FedEx Cup standings are eligible to compete at the BMW this week and following the conclusion of this no-cut event, the top 30 in FedEx Cup standings will advance to the Tour Championship next week at East Lake. Of the top 70, only Patrick Reed will not be teeing it up this week, after he was unfortunately hospitalized for pneumonia Monday and forced to withdraw.
The 2021 BMW Championship marks the first time Caves Valley has ever hosted a PGA TOUR event, and this track that is located right outside of Baltimore was designed by Tom Fazio and then renovated by his son Logan last year. Most notably, championship tee boxes were added to make the course longer in preparation for this week’s playoff, but overall, this par 72 that features bentgrass greens appears to be a very scoreable venue. The rough isn’t overly penalizing, water is only a real threat on three holes, most of the fairway bunkers can be cleared with a driver by most of the field and there are three par 4s under 400 yards. Add in all the rain the Baltimore area has seen over the past few weeks, and Caves Valley should yield a winning number near 20 strokes under par. Given the total length of this par 72, I fully expect longer hitters to have an advantage this week, putting an emphasis on OTT metrics, in addition to the usual heavy weight on ball-striking stats. As a par 72, there are four par 5s to attack this week in Owings Mills and capitalizing on these holes for at least a birdie is going to be critical. Also, we need to focus on par 4 efficiency from 450-500 yards, with six of the 10 par 4s at Caves Valley landing in this range.
As noted above, this is a small field with no cut, so barring a withdrawal or disqualification, every golfer this week is guaranteed four rounds of golf to accrue DKFP. As a result, my preferred route for roster construction will be star-and-scrubs builds, and below I have featured four of my favorite sub $7.5K options on DraftKings for the BMW Championship.
Cameron Champ, $7,300
Champ is only a month removed from his win at the 3M Open, and just carded his fourth straight top-30 finish last week at THE NORTHERN TRUST. With 6.1 strokes gained on approach, not only was this the second-best iron performance of Champ’s career, but this was the fourth consecutive event that he has produced positive strokes T2G and on APP collectively.
Without a doubt, Champ has the driver to thrive at Caves Valley, ranking 10th in SG: OTT this season, and a top-20 finish isn’t out of the question for the 26-year-old this week.
Jhonattan Vegas, $7,100
In the DraftKings $1 Million Flop Shot tournament this past week, Vegas was the fifth-highest owned player. He ended up missing the weekend, snapping a streak of 10 made cuts in a row, and now should come with much lower ownership this week due to recency bias. Even though the result was a MC at Liberty National, Vegas still gained strokes from T2G and on approach for the sixth start in a row. This season, the Venezuelan has supplied eight top 25s and has been extremely close to winning on multiple occasions. Vegas has three runner-up finishes on his season resume, one of which came at another lengthy Fazio design in Congaree Golf Club for the Palmetto Championship.
Very few are better drivers of the golf ball than Vegas, with him ranking fourth in SG: OTT this season, and I love gambling on the bomber for a big bounce back at Caves Valley.
Sebastian Munoz, $6,700
Munoz is playing great golf right now and is a value play that has to be taken advantage of. At Liberty National, he carded a T21 finish, while ranking inside the top 15 in both SGT2G and SG: APP for the star-studded event. The 28-year-old has made four of his past five cuts, with three of those finishes being inside the top 25. Over this five-start stretch, Munoz has impressively shot under par in 13 of his 16 rounds, and he is always a sharp option at no-cut events.
After posting a T8 in his BMW Championship debut a year ago, the Columbian carded another T8 at the TOUR Championship the following week. As for this season, Munoz has generated a top 25 in all four of his starts at no-cut tournaments, including a T9 at Shadow Creek for the CJ Cup, which is notably a Fazio creation.
Hudson Swafford, $6,000
Swafford has found some compelling form and is a no-brainer at this bare minimum price tag. Last week at THE NORTHERN TRUST, the 33-year-old was masterful as a ball striker, ranking fourth in SGT2G and ninth in SG: APP, lifting him to a T11 finish. Given that this was one of the strongest fields of the season, this is an extremely impressive feat for Swafford, and if he didn’t lose 3.5 strokes with his putter, the veteran would have been right in the mix for a victory.
Swafford has now shot even par or better in seven of his past eight rounds and ranks second in SG: OTT and fifth in ball striking when we compare this world-class field’s past 12 rounds. If you weren’t sold on him already, just like Vegas, Swafford finished in a tie for second at Congaree back in June.
Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Hunta512) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
21+ (18+ NH). CO/IL/IN/IA/NH/NJ/PA/TN/VA/WV/MI only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.