Pick 5: Farmers Insurance Open

The PGA’s California Swing continues this week as we wave goodbye to the month of January and say hello, once again, to Tiger Woods. Waiting for Woods are a pair of tracks he knows all too well, the North and South courses at Torrey Pines in La Jolla for the Farmers Insurance Open.

Woods is a seven-time champion in this event, a feat that included a record-tying performance of -22 in his 1999 victory. In addition, Woods’ last major championship was won on the South Course, when he bested Rocco Mediate in a Monday playoff to cap the now legendary 2008 U.S. Open.

Jon Rahm (8/1) enters the week as the defending champion, and he will look to become the first back-to-back winner since Woods won four straight times from 2005-2008. Rahm, of course, just won last weekend at the CareerBuilder Challenge, and a second straight victory on Tour would be the PGA’s first since Justin Thomas won both Hawaii events a year ago.

Below, we take a wider look at five players who look like good picks this week in our PGA Pick ‘Em Contest.

The Favorites

Jon Rahm (8/1): The No. 2 player in the world arrives in La Jolla with the best odds of anyone in the field. As we touched on above, Rahm knows how to win here and is one of the hottest players in the field.

There isn’t a ton of value here, but he is a safe and smart selection this week.

Hideki Matsuyama (15/1): Matsuyama has three top-5 finishes in his last four starts and will look to keep the momentum rolling in this one. Torrey’s setup fits his game nicely and he appears to be Rahm’s best competition.

The Contenders

Marc Leishman (20/1): A strong finish in 2017 and decent start to the 2018 campaign has Leishman back inside the top-15 of the World Golf Rankings. He posted a pair of sub-70 rounds here a year ago and should be able to top that this week.

Tony Finau (30/1): No one’s game fits Torrey better than Finau. He finished T-4 here in 2017 and provides some great value at 30/1.

The Darkhorse

Si Woo Kim (80/1): Kim’s starts have been a rollercoaster ride since winning The Players back in May. He’s missed five cuts since, but also has a pair of top-10’s to go along with a solid 13th-place finish at the U.S. Open.

If he’s got it together this week, he can take advantage of the field and surprise from his spot at 80/1.

The Tiger

Tiger Woods (25/1): And here’s your Tiger primer. Woods will tee it up this week for his first competition in nearly two months, his last start coming at the Hero World Challenge (-8, 9th place).
Woods’ past performances here should give the public some confidence, but he is obviously still in the very early stages of his latest comeback attempt. And 25/1 just doesn’t provide enough value to take the risk, but if you can find a higher number, it may be tempting.

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