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2021 3M Open Best Sleepers & Longshot Picks

Chris Amberley

by Chris Amberley in Golf

Jul 20, 2021 · 6:00 AM PDT

Matthew Wolff acknowledges the crowd
Matthew Wolff acknowledges the gallery after his putt on the 16th green during the third round of the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Saturday, June 19, 2021, at Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
  • The 3M Open tees off Thursday (July 22nd) at TPC Twin Cities, in Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Matthew Wolff, the 2019 champion, ranks eighth in birdie or better percentage and third in eagles over the past 50 rounds in this field
  • Read below for analysis of the event and our favorite sleepers and longshot bets

Golf’s Major season is behind us and now the focus turns to the race for the FedEx Cup. Just three tournaments remain before the playoffs begin, starting this week (July 22nd) at the 3M Open from TPC Twin Cities in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Like the Rocket Mortgage Classic and John Deere Classic in previous weeks, this tournament has yielded extremely low scores in its two-year existence, and we should expect the winner this week will need to reach at least -20 to get the job done.

One player who has no issue going low is Matthew Wolff, who won the inaugural version of this event in 2019.

2021 3M Open Odds

Golfer Odds to Win Top-10 Odds Top-20 Odds
Matthew Wolff +3000 +350 -110
Patton Kizzire +6500 +500 +275
Charl Schwartzel +7000 +500 +300
Jhonattan Vegas +7500 +550 +335
Troy Merritt +8500 +700 +400

Odds as of July 19th at DraftKings and FanDuel.

Wolff Checks All the Boxes

Wolff followed that result up with a T12 here last year, and is one of the best pure scorers in the game. He ranks eighth in the field over the past 50 rounds in birdie or better percentage, and third in eagles. He’s racked up 45 birdies and an eagle in eight competitive rounds at this course, failing to break 70 just once.

After a four month layoff, Wolff returned to competitive play at the U.S. Open last month, and his ball striking has been on point ever since. He gained 6.7 strokes ball striking at that tournament, and another 3.5 last time out at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

Iron play and putting will be the key to victory this week, and Wolff can get red-hot with the flat stick. Over the past 12 months he’s gained at least 4 strokes putting four times, and in each instance he’s posted a top-15 result. If he putts well this week look out. Another 20+ birdie week is well within his range of outcomes.

Pick: Matthew Wolff to Win (+3000)

Kizzire In a Groove

Speaking of putting and irons, that’s Patton Kizzire’s game in a nutshell. The 35-year-old is abysmal off the tee, but that won’t necessarily matter here, as TPC Twin Cities features some of the easiest fairways to hit on Tour. That should set Kizzire up for success, and potentially a fourth top-10 finish since April.

He finished just outside the top-10 last time out at the John Deere Classic (11th), but gained strokes across the board and was +7.5 in the tee-to-green department.

Kizzire ranks fifth in this field in birdie or better percentage over the past 50 rounds, 12th in strokes gained approach and 14th in putting.

Pick: Patton Kizzire Top-10 (+500)

Top-20 Value Picks

  1. Charl Schwartzel (+300): He’s posted three top-20 finishes (and a 21st) in his past seven events, including a 19th place finish at the U.S. Open. Last week, he gained 6.6 strokes ball striking at the Barbasol piling up 21 birdies along the way. He’s one-for-one in made cuts at this event, finishing 3rd in 2020.
  2. Jhonattan Vegas (+335): The two-time winner on tour has three top-11 results in his past five starts, and has gained a combined 22.1 strokes with his ball striking in his past three tournaments alone. He ranks 11th in this field in scoring and is fresh off a week where he poured in 19 birdies at the John Deere Classic. A notoriously shaky putter, he’s actually turned things around with the flat stick recently, gaining on the greens in three of his past five events.
  3. Troy Merritt (+400): Just a few short weeks ago, Merritt’s outright price at the John Deere Classic was half of what it is this week. Sure, back-to-back missed cuts will do that, but the Open Championship result should be thrown out because that’s not a setup for him to succeed at. Merritt excels at easy courses, and they don’t come much easier than TPC Twin Cities on Tour. He ranks 22nd in the field in birdie or better percentage and eighth in putting over the past 50 rounds. In the last two months alone, he’s posted top-7 results at the Rocket Mortgage, Charles Schwab and Byron Nelson.
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