Cognizant Classic Core Plays: PGA DFS Picks

The PGA Tour has made its way from west to east coast as the Cognizant Classic officially kicks off the Florida swing. The course, PGA National, has been a mainstay on the tour for years. Known for its numerous water hazards, well placed bunkers and fast Bermuda greens, it provides a great challenge for some of the best in the world.

Rory McIlroy headlines this field at a price tag of $12,200 on DraftKings. He provides a very interesting and clear inflection point on this slate. What you decide to do with him will shape how your rosters come together. Aside from McIlroy, I compiled my three favorite core plays and a GPP flier that I’ll be building my lineups around this week. We got three out of four golfers through the cut last week in this article, along with a top-3 finisher. Let’s keep the momentum going and start the Florida swing off right!

These Cognizant Classic core plays will get you started on building a great PGA DFS picks lineup. You can perfect the process using Stokastic’s fantasy point and ownership projections, find high-leverage plays using the Top Golfer’s tool or use the NEW PGA Sims tool to build a bunch of high-ROI lineups in seconds! Check out some of our winners from other sports from this past week to see the value of our tools:

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Cognizant Classic Core Plays

Corey Conners – $9,100

With a bevy of trouble awaiting off most of the tee boxes at PGA National, I want to target accurate drivers and overall solid ball strikers this week. Conners fits this mold nicely. He’s hit north of 63% of his fairways over the last 12 months and ranks inside the top 15 in strokes gained on approach over the last 24 rounds. He’s made 12 straight cuts, with three of those finishes coming inside the top 10. As he is one of the best pure ball strikers in this field, I’ll be rostering Conners at a nice clip this week.

Stephen Jaeger – $8,800

Jaeger has been a staple within my core plays article this year, and I’m going back to the well again this week. He came through for us as a feature in last week’s core play article with a tied for third in Mexico. He’s now made 21 cuts in a row and is playing the best golf of his career. He’s made the cut in this event three years in a row, including a 14th-place finish here last season. Jaeger ranks first in birdie-or-better percentage in this field over the last 24 rounds, possessing some nice upside for his upper-$8,000 price. His combination of total driving, recent form and nice history here have me backing the 34-year-old German once again.

Doug Ghim – $7,000

Ghim has been on quite the heater of late, with three straight finishes inside the top 13. With a fairways-hit percentage north of 70%, he grades out as one of the most accurate drivers on tour. As discussed, this skillset will be paramount this week. This course is as much about limiting the big numbers as it is about firing low scores, and keeping the ball out of trouble off the tee is essential. Over the last 24 rounds, Ghim ranks ninth in strokes gained off the tee and 21st in strokes gained on approach. The all-around ball striking profile combined with his more-than-reasonable price tag at the bottom of the $7,000 range makes Ghim one my favorite plays of the week.

Flier – Thomas Detry – $6,900

I’m not expecting Detry to be very popular coming off the missed cut in Mexico just five days ago. However, his price tag combined with the upside he has is a combination I’m willing to take a chance on. This season he has three top-20 finishes, including a fourth-place finish at Pebble Beach earlier this month. Over the last 24 rounds, he ranks sixth in this field in birdie-or-better percentage and top 40 in strokes gained off the tee. The shift to Bermuda grass greens should also benefit Detry. He ranks sixth among this field in strokes gained putting on Bermuda. His 59% driving accuracy over the last 12 months is definitely a cause for concern, but as a GPP differentiator in the $6,000 range, he is worth a roll of the dice given the upside.

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Hopefully these PGA DFS core plays, PGA DFS Picks and our hyper-focus on Cognizant Classic core plays proved useful.

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