The PGA TOUR heads to La Quinta, California this week for The American Express. There will be a three-course rotation in play this week with a 54-hole cut. The course that will be played twice (including the final round) will be the Pete Dye Stadium Course, which measures as a 7,187-yard par 72 with Poa grass greens.
Below I have outlined my two favorite bets for the week.
JT had a miserable 2023 season, posting zero wins and failing to make the FedEx Cup playoffs. He did turn it around in the Fall, however, finishing fifth at the Fortinet, fourth at the Nedbank Golf Challenge on the DP World Tour, and then finally capping it with a third at the Hero World Challenge in December. During this stretch, Thomas ranks No. 2 in this field in both SG: Tee-to-Green and SG: Total, sitting behind only Scottie Scheffler and Xander Schauffele, respectively, in both departments.
It was not long ago where JT was 10/1 or shorter in most events he teed it up at, meaning if this recent strong stretch of play is a harbinger of things to come, getting 25/1 on the 15-time PGA TOUR winner presents extreme value here.
JT looked amazing on approach in his starts this Fall, and I’ve seen all I needed to see to back him at this number. He also finished T7 at this event the last time he played it back in 2015.
This is an outrageous number to me, even with some of the additional star-power in the field this week. Kirk is two weeks removed from winning The Sentry, which featured many of the top players in the world. He then followed that up with a T18 last week at the Sony, where he was absolutely dialed in with his ball-striking. Kirk gained a whopping 7.7 strokes on approach and an additional 4.2 off the tee at Waialae.
Unfortunately, he lost 3.4 around the green and 2.8 putting, otherwise he would have finished in the top 10 with ease. As we know, short game play can be extremely fluky from week-to-week, and Kirk has always been steady in that department.
To put the icing on this cake, Kirk finished T3 at this event last year, while finishing T21 or better an additional two times since 2017. Everything is pointing towards Kirk being in contention this week, which is good enough for me at this inflated 45/1 number.
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All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook, lines and odds subject to change.
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