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Tour Championship First-Round Leader Odds, Predictions & Best Bets

Michael Harrison

by Michael Harrison in Golf

Aug 23, 2022 · 11:52 AM PDT

Rory McIlroy watches shot, RBC Canadian Open
Jun 11, 2022; Etobicoke, Ontario, CAN; Rory McIlroy hits a chip shot from the fringe of the first green during the third round of the RBC Canadian Open golf tournament. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
  • The Tour Championship from Atlanta, GA starts Thursday, August 25th
  • Rory McIlroy, Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele are +1000 co-favorites to lead after round one
  • See the best bets and Tour Championship first-round leader odds in the article below

The final leg of the FedEx Cup Playoffs sees the top-29 golfers on the points list compete at the Tour Championship. It would have been 30, but Will Zalatoris withdrew with a back injury. World number one Scottie Scheffler is the favorite to claim his first FedEx Cup, as he starts the event with a two-stroke lead over BMW Championship winner Patrick Cantlay.

There aren’t as many Tour Championship longshot picks to choose from with just the top-29 players on the FedEx Cup points list teeing it up. Taking starting shots out of the equation, a trio of golfers are co-favored to record the lowest first round score on Thursday.

2022 Tour Championship First-Round Leader Odds Without Starting Strokes

Golfers Odds Tee Time
Rory McIlroy +1000 1:45pm
Xander Schauffele +1000 1:55pm
Patrick Cantlay +1000 2:05pm
Jon Rahm +1100 1:25pm
Scottie Scheffler +1200 2:05pm
Justin Thomas +1600 1:15pm
Tony Finau +1600 1:35pm
Matt Fitzpatrick +1800 1:05pm
Cameron Smith +1800 1:45pm
Adam Scott +2000 11:55am
Jordan Spieth +2000 12:45pm
Sungjae Im +2000 1:25pm
Sam Burns +2000 1:55pm
Collin Morikawa +2200 12:35pm
Viktor Hovland +2200 12:35pm

Odds as of August 23rd at DraftKings Sportsbook. See available DraftKings Sportsbook promo code.



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The forecast calls for there to be a risk of a thunderstorm all day. Temperatures will be high 70’s for those teeing it up first, hitting low 80’s for those starting later. The wind will be pretty much the exact same for all players, with gusts only reaching around seven miles per hour.

Xander Schauffele Loves This Course

In the five times Xander Schauffele (1:55pm tee time) has played at this venue, he’s been phenomenal each and every time. He won in his debut performance in 2017, then was in the top-10 in his title defense the following year.

The last three years, if you took away the starting strokes for the championship, he’d have been second in 2019, would’ve won it in 2020, then was third in 2021. Unsurprisingly, his ‘strokes gained’ stats at East Lake have been through the roof.

Xander Schauffele’s Strokes Gained Ranks Last 20 Rounds At East Lake

Total Short Game Putting Tee-To-Green Ball Striking Approach Around-The-Green Off-The-Tee
1 1 1 3 4 4 5 8

He also comes in with three titles in his last ten tournaments, and was T-3rd at last weekend’s BMW Championship.

Pick: Xander Schauffele (+1000)

Adam Scott Playing Sold Golf

Adam Scott (11:55am) has been outstanding, becoming the only golfer to play his way into both the BMW and Tour Championships when he on the outside looking in at the previous tournaments. He chased a T-5th at the FedEx St. Jude Championship with another T-5th at the BMW.

Subsequently, he sports some impressive statistics of late.

Adam Scott’s Strokes Gained Ranks Last Eight Rounds

Putting Short Game Total Around-The-Green Off-The-Tee Tee-To-Green Ball Striking
1 1 3 6 15 16 21

Scott has had success at this venue in the past, with top-10’s in his past three attempts. In his last twelve rounds at East Lake, he’s the best in ball striking and tee-to-green play, and fourth in total strokes gained.

Pick: Adam Scott (+2000)

Cameron Young A Stellar Rookie

Cameron Young (1:05pm) has had an incredible rookie campaign on the PGA Tour, amassing seven top-3’s, with five of them resulting in runner-up finishes.

Young also ranks ninth in first round scoring average, as he’s shot 67 or better in three of his previous four Thursdays.

2021-22 PGA Tour First Round Scoring Average Leaders

Golfer Average Score Odds
1. Rory McIlroy 68.07 +1000
3. Cameron Smith 68.44 +1800
5. Joaquin Niemann 68.57 +2200
6. Aaron Wise 68.61 +2800
7. Patrick Cantlay 68.65 +1000
8. Scottie Scheffler 68.86 +1200
9. Cameron Young 68.91 +2500
10. K.H. Lee 69.07 +3500
T-11. Xander Schauffele 69.17 +1000
T-11. Sungjae Im 69.17 +2000

In the last twelve rounds, he’s tops in SG: off-the-tee and second in both tee-to-green and around-the-green. While he’s never played the Tour Championship at East Lake before, he presents solid value at his price.

Pick: Cameron Young (+2500)


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