Tiger Woods returns to golf this week at his own Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club as the PGA Tour's push toward the season's third major continues. Here's our stats look:
Bill Haas is the defending champion, as he beat Roberto Castro by three shots last year. In 2012, Woods beat Bo Van Pelt by two, in 2011 Nick Watney beat K.J. Choi by two, and in 2010 Justin Rose beat Ryan Moore by one. The event started in 2007 and has never gone to a playoff.
Our pick out of this batch is Haas, who was in contention at both Augusta and the U.S. Open. Statistically, he ranks 23rd in greens in regulation, eighth in sand save percentage and 26th in the all-around ranking.
There's been a lot of talk in the media about how well Woods does when returning off injury or long layoff, including two wins at Torrey Pines following breaks. But many have failed to mention that if you put aside the back problems, Tiger flat out wasn't playing well in his 2014 appearances. He hasn't played enough rounds to be ranked by the PGA Tour, but he averaged only 287 yards off the tee, hit just 53 percent of his fairways and 57 percent of his greens and has a scoring average higher than 71. Couple this with the fact that Tiger himself admitted he'll be rusty this week (even though he's been working on his chipping and putting for a couple months), and he cannot be a fantasy pick this week.
Who is Playing
The field also includes Jason Day, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose, Patrick Reed, Erik Compton, Patrick Cantlay, Jason Dufner, Ernie Els, Webb Simpson and more.
Our pick - besides Spieth. who is always a good pick – is Day. He just finished T4 at the U.S. Open and backed it up with a T18 at the Travelers Championship. His 64-percent of fairways hit should do him well on a tough Congressional track that puts a premium on hitting fairways.
Brandt Snedeker – Snedeker shot a Sunday 64 to jump 23 spots into a tie for 11th. For the week he ranked 11th in strokes gained-putting.
Stuart Appleby – Appleby shot a final-round 64 as well that put him into a T18 finish, lofting him up 26 spots in the final standings. He ranked fourth in strokes gained–putting at the Travelers.
Jason Day – Another reason to pick Day is because he shot a Sunday 65 that gave him a 16 spot jump into a T18 finish.