Valspar Championship Core Plays: PGA DFS Picks

The PGA Tour heads to the Copperhead course at Innisbrook this week to conclude the 2024 Florida swing. Much like last week, this course places a premium on ball striking. Tree lined fairways, 3-4 inch rough, and strategically placed bunkers make Copperhead another tough test for these players. Given the layout of the course, many golfers will be forced to hit less than driver off the tee leading to some longer approach shots into the well protected greens. The winning score in years past has hovered around the single digit under par mark. With the forecasted winds on the weekend sustaining around 15mph, avoiding big numbers will play a key role to success.

Given the difficult course and weather conditions, game theory comes even more into play than it would on a normal week. By predicting the lineups I’ll be playing against, and leveraging hole by hole simulation technology, the game theory work is made easy with the Stokastic PGA Sims tool. This tool is a big part of my weekly process. As always, I’ve used this tool to isolate my favorite plays of the week that I’ll be building my rosters around.

You can also use the Stokastic PGA Lineup Generator to quickly and effectively build great lineups. For a limited time, get your first week of PGA Lineup Generator for $1

The best player in the field by a wide margin is Xander Schauffele. He will be a very popular selection this week for good reason. How you handle Xander will dictate how you approach the slate. Aside from Xander, I’ve identified three core players and a GPP flier that I’ll be building around this week.

These Valspar Championship core plays and picks will kickstart your PGA DFS process. You can perfect it by reading through Stokastic’s fantasy point and ownership projections, finding high-leverage plays using the top golfers tool or using the PGA Sims tool to build several high-ROI lineups in seconds!

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Valspar Championship Core Plays: PGA DFS Picks

Sungjae Im – $9,400

It’s been a very slow start to the 2024 season for Sungjae Im, with only one top 10 finish over nine starts. However, there are definitive signs that his game is starting to round into form. Coming off an 18th place finish at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, he followed it up with a 31st place finish at the PLAYERS last week while gaining over six strokes on the field tee to green. He has finishes of 29th and 4th in two career starts in this event, so he’s clearly comfortable around the Copperhead course. I’m banking on the recent resurgence in his ball striking to continue, and betting on his 2nd top 10 finish of the season this week.

Andrew Putnam – $7,700

Andrew Putnam has had a nice start to the 2024 season. He’s made six of his last seven cuts that include two top 10 finishes. Over the last two weeks alone, he has gained nine strokes on approach against two pretty stacked fields. His combination of hot iron play, and a 67% driving accuracy over the last calendar year, makes him a really nice fit for this course. With a $7,700 price tag, he allows for a lot of roster flexibility to fit in some of the studs.

Lucas Glover – $7,300

There’s a lot to like about how Lucas Glover sets up this week. Over the last 24 rounds he ranks 7th in this field in strokes gained approach. Combining the hot irons with a driving accuracy north of 70%, he is a great fit for the demands of the course. He’s also very familiar with this event. In eight total starts, he’s made the cut six times including three finishes inside the top 24. The main shortcoming with Glover will always be the putter, which has held him back throughout his career. We shouldn’t expect a spiked week, but if he can break even on the greens he should put himself in position to pay off his low $7,300 price tag.

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PGA DFS Flier Pick for the Valspar Championship: Brendon Todd – $7,400

Brendon Todd is a golfer that nobody ever likes to click on. For the most part, his game is very uninspiring and quite boring. He doesn’t hit it far off the tee, and relies heavily on his short game to compete. These traits typically lead to suppressed ownership quite often, as is the case this week. So why am I interested this week?

This is a course that doesn’t require flashy play, or high upside traits. This is very much a positional golf course that relies on accuracy off the tee and solid play throughout the bag. Todd checks these boxes quite well, with a driving accuracy of 68% on the year, and top 20 rankings in the strokes gained short game categories. He’s also shown some decent upside on these types of courses throughout his career, including a 6th place finish at Bay Hill just two weeks ago. I’m taking a shot on Todd at single digit ownership this week as a GPP differentiator.

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