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Golf Barometer: A Four-Day Story

David Ferris

David Ferris

Ferris covers the PGA Tour for RotoWire. He is an award-winning sports writer and a veteran fantasy columnist. He also is a scratch golfer.


UPGRADE

Graeme McDowell:
Make it three worldwide wins for G-Mac, as he closed the deal at the French Open. We'd like to put McDowell on the short list of British Open favorites, but it's puzzling why he didn't do a thing at the first two majors of the year (trunk slam, trunk slam), and this victory came on the heels of four missed cuts. That said, he does have the 2010 U.S. Open win to point to, and he was close in all four majors last year (T12, T2, T5, T11). Look for a four-day story from McDowell next week.

Paul Casey:
He's been in a monster funk for a couple of years, but maybe a win at the Irish Open - capped by a 50-foot eagle on the final hole - will clear out the cobwebs. It's been three years since Casey showed anything in a major, but he does have a T3 and a T7 on his British Open resume.

Jonas Blixt:
He only had two strong tournaments all season before last week's trophy grab at The Greenbrier Classic, a snappy 66-67-67-67. Blixt hasn't been a consistent ball striker all year, but a hot putter (47th in strokes gained) and creative play around the green (15th in scrambling) makes him dangerous. Blixt's first win came last October in the watered-down Frys.com Open; the second victory is a better validation for his career.

David Lingmerth:
Another six-figure cash for the classy rookie, his fourth of the year (and third in six starts). Lingmerth is one of the shorter hitters on tour and his iron play hasn't been anything special (121st in GIR), but somehow he's scoring well (66th) and maintaining consistency. He looks trustworthy for the balance of the year.

DOWNGRADE

Sean O'Hair:
Another empty tournament as his lost season continues: seven checks in 19 starts, and nothing better than T40 the last four months. It's shocking to see this kind of year from O'Hair as he turns 31 - he was considered a future star not long ago. O'Hair can still blast the ball to the moon (299.2 yards per drive), but he's outside the Top 140 in the other big three stats (driving accuracy, GIR, strokes gained putting). Does O'Hair need a break from the game? Is he hiding an injury? Something doesn't add up.

John Daly:
Four checks cashed, nine missed cuts and now one Tommy John surgery - call it a wipeout year. Daly's career could be over at age 47.

HOLDING STEADY

Johnson Wagner:
It was frustrating to see the closing 73 after a 62-70-64 start to the week, but a T2 check is welcome for Wagner on the heels of seven straight missed cuts. Standing 177th in total driving, Wagner needs to be almost letter-perfect everywhere else if he's going to make cuts, let alone contend.

Tom Watson:
He finished a respectable T38 at The Greenbrier course he likes so much, and you know Watson will be ready for the British Open. Everyone remembers the playoff loss to Stewart Cink back at the 2009 Open, but let's remember Watson has also made the cut across the pond in the last two seasons. It's fun to still have him around at age 63.