Ah, Bombs & Values, my favorite time of the week. I had to take a week off from this format because The Masters is no place for Bombs (bless Will Zalatoris for trying, though), but I’m happy to be back looking at the bottom-of-the-board options we have to choose from at the RBC Heritage – there’s a lot of them.
A tournament which has given us CT Pan, Satoshi Kodaira, Wesley Bryan, and Branden Grace as winners in recent years is just begging us to throw some bombs out there and hope we can land a big one. The shorter you make a course, the more it tends to open the door for the tail end of the field to hang around, and at just under 6,900 yards, it’s fair game out there this week. Of course, it’s worth noting that the field this year features 5 of the Top 10 ranked players in the world, so there will be a more formidable path of resistance to the top this week than most years past. That said, I have no self control, so whether it be a bunch of Stars & Scrubs lineups or a handful of 100/1+ outrights, I’m looking to get plenty of exposure to the guys below for this week’s RBC Heritage.
Pricing from Draft Kings
Charley Hoffman ($7,800)
I was planning to feature Charley Hoffman as a Fave in my next article, but that was before Draft Kings made him the best value on the DFS board in the $7K range.
Over the last 3 months, Charley Hoffman ranks #1 SG: TOT, #1 SG: T2G, #1 SG: BS, #1 DK Points, and if Collin Morikawa weren’t teeing it up at Harbour Town this week, he’d be #1 SG: APP as well. He has 3 T10s in his last 6 starts, including an impressive Runner Up finish at the Valero Texas Open (also known as the Charley Hoffman Open) last we saw him two weeks ago.
So the hottest player on Tour since January must have some pretty awful Course History to fall to the $7K range, right? Nope! Hoffman has just two missed cuts here in nine career trips, highlighted by two T10s. He ranks 29th overall in the field SG: TOT at the RBC Heritage and 4th SG: P at this track, thanks to 5 consecutive trips here in which he’s gained at least one stroke putting.
It’s the way his Driving Accuracy has been trending however that gets me really excited to play Hoffman this week. Over the course of his career, he’s been pretty erratic with the driver, ranking 103rd in this field in Fairways Gained over the last 100 rounds, and 87th over the last 50 rounds. But he’s flipped a switch recently, as he now ranks 15th in Fairways Gained over his last 8 rounds, and 8th over the last 4.
So to recap, the #1 T2G player and Ball Striker comes to a course where he ranks 4th in Putting and is hitting his Driver more accurately now than ever before in his career. What more do you need from the Hoff?
Emiliano Grillo ($7,300)
Grillo is probably the opposite profile to what I’m looking for this week, seeing as he ranks 131st SG: ARG and 107th SG: SG, but this is a pure value play at this price for a guy who has a T6, T21, and T11 in 3 of his last 4 starts. It’s also encouraging to see that his three best results over the last 5 months have come on coastal tracks like Harbour Town (T6 at Corales, T11 at the Puerto Rico Open, and T8 at Mayakoba).
The short game is bad, there’s no denying that, but similar to what we saw with Aaron Wise before the Honda, all of Grillo’s success happens to be coming at non-ShotLink events, which would suggest that his Short Game measurables would presumably be stronger than they appear if those were taken into account in the models.
You can count on Grillo to hit fairways (37th Fairways Gained) and greens (11th GIRs). He’s also 4th SG: BS at the RBC Heritage and 11th SG: BS at Pete Dye Courses. If Hideki Matsuyama can win a Major Championship despite being who he is on the greens, then why can’t Emiliano Grillo win the RBC Heritage?
Chase Seiffert ($6,700)
Another strong Chase Seiffert performance goes by, another refresh of Draft Kings pricing is issued, and another value write up for Chase Seiffert is written. Seriously, what else does this guy need to do to start getting some more respect around the industry? Pretty soon you’re going to see him rocking a Casper Mattresses sponsor logo because nobody gets slept on more than Chase Seiffert.
Seiffert rides in with 4 straight cuts made, including 3 T20s in that span. Like Grillo, Chase is seeing a lot of success on Coastal tracks, which bodes well again for the Florida native this week at Harbour Town. And talk about trending, Seiffert’s rank in Driving Accuracy has improved every week over the last 50 rounds measured, culminating in a #1 Driving Accuracy rank in his last start at the Valero Texas Open.
He rates out 17th in my Model this week, thanks to his strengths in Par 4 Scoring (13th), Pete Dye History (13th), and Birdies Gained (25th). This will be his debut at the RBC Heritage, but with his solid all around game, I expect he’ll continue to hang around beyond the weekend.
Jim Furyk ($6,600)
Jim Furyk has not had the best results recently (unless you’re counting the Champions Tour, which you shouldn’t) or at the RBC Heritage, so he’s probably not going to be that popular this week, however he does have 2 wins in his career here and 3 T10s since 2012, so he’s certainly worth a look if the ownership is going to be as low as it seems. He has lost strokes putting here in 6 of his 8 trips, which is a bit of a concern, as is the fact he lost 5 strokes putting last we saw him at the Valero, but Furyk has proven to be a strong putter over the course of his career, especially on Bermuda, so this is a bet on him turning things around on the greens.
Surprisingly enough, Jim Furyk ranks in the Top 30 of each of my 5 most important stat categories this week: SG: APP (29th), SG: ARG (21st), Fairways Gained (7th), SG: TOT – Pete Dye (18th), and SG: TOT – RBC Heritage (6th). Harbour Town can really be a walk in the park of you’re pounding fairways and hitting your Approach shots where you want them to go, and that’s exactly what Furyk does best. He’ll have stiff competition to make it an RBC trifecta, but a Top 25 finish would be well worth the price at $6,600.
Ben Martin ($6,400)
You’ve never heard of Ben Martin, I had no idea he existed up until about 10 minutes ago, and there’s a non-zero chance he’s actually just a create-a-player stand in that the Tour forgot to replace on the tee sheets when filling out this week’s field. In any case, while this 33 year old has tried to fly under the radar his entire career, that ends today.
Martin is a hometown hero hailing from Greenwood, South Carolina and is a Clemson University alumnus. He has played in the RBC Heritage 5 times in his career, making it through the cut four of those times, highlighted by a T3 finish in 2014. Martin’s strengths are in his Short Game, ranking 38th in the Field SG: SG, but his Irons seem to come alive with every trip back home to Harbour Town, as he’s gained strokes on Approach all 5 of his career trips here.
We are also in the midst of a rare Ben Martin heater, as he’s riding three consecutive made cuts, highlighted by an impressive T9 showing at Corales just 3 weeks ago. He’s not going to beat Dustin Johnson and Collin Morikawa this week, but he’s playing some really strong golf right now and has a great chance to make it through the Cut this week at <1% ownership.
Lucas Glover (+9000)
Last year Lucas Glover opened 25/1. That’s a very specific detail, but that fact remains permeated in my brain because of how ridiculous I remember that being. Paul Casey is 25/1 to win this time around for God’s sake.
Glover went on to finish T21 in the 2020 RBC Heritage so as long as you didn’t bet him Outright, it may not have actually been that crazy in hindsight to be on him. Fast forward to 2021, and Glover’s going to command popularity again, as the South Carolina native rides in with back to back T20s and a T4 at the Valero Texas Open in his last start, however this year we get the luxury of a 90/1 discount despite that hot recent play. Known as an awful putter, Glover rides in to Hilton Head having gained strokes putting in 3 consecutive events, each of those coming on Bermuda Grass, an encouraging sign to continue at Harbour Town where he has also gained strokes on the greens for three consecutive years.
Lucas Glover ranks 26th in Ball Striking coming into this week and 40th in Fairways Gained, which should set him up for continued success at the RBC Heritage as long as those trends continue.
Michael Thompson (+12500)
Gather ’round everybody, it is Michael Thompson week! Usually when it’s Michael Thompson week, everyone kind of acknowledges that it’s a Michael Thompson week but then doesn’t actually buy into it. I get it, he’s Michael Thompson. His name is bland, his game is bland, his personality is bland, his wins on tour (most recently the 3M Open last July) have come in bland fashion, and when he doesn’t win, he usually skirts past the cut line and fizzles out over the weekend…blandly.
So while everyone else sleeps on Mikey T, I’m going to jump on the stats that are sitting here right under our nose. Thompson has back to back T10 finishes at this event his last 2 trips here, and is coming off of a couple solid showings recently with a T34 at The Masters and T19 at the Honda Classic.
This week, he is popping in all of my key stat models. He’s one of only 6 players in the field to rank above average in every one of my Key Stats, and he also is one of just 12 players to rank better than average in each of the Top 10 correlated stats with historical success at the RBC Heritage. When I refined the stats down to my 5 most important – Driving Accuracy, APP, ARG, RBC Heritage History, and Pete Dye Course History, Thompson was still left standing with only 5 others. He is #15 overall in my model this week and I will be rolling him out on both my betting card and DFS lineups without a doubt.
Russell Knox (+12500)
We’re on a coast, there’s wind abound, and that means we have to at least consider Russell Knox, who only seems to factor into contention when the conditions mirror those of his native Scottish homeland.
Knox has a good combination of Course History (6th SG: TOT at the RBC Heritage) and Pete Dye History (32nd SG: T2G on Pete Dye Tracks). He also comes into this week with a very solid rank of 20th in Fairways Gained and 45th SG: APP. His best result at the RBC Heritage came in 2016 when he finished Runner Up to Branden Grace.
The recent performances don’t look spectacular and that’s mostly due to the fact that he has lost strokes putting for 5 consecutive events dating back to the Genesis in February. The last time Knox did manage to gain strokes putting however, was the AT&T Pro-Am, another sub-7,200 windy/coastal track, and he went on to finish T7 there. There’s also room for optimism with Knox’s putter at Harbour Town, as despite his career-long struggles on the greens, Knox has gained strokes putting in 5 of his 7 career trips here. If you’re willing to roll the dice on a poor putter this week, Russell Knox at least offers obtainable upside with the Ball Striking prowess to back it up.
Tom Hoge (+20000)
Tom Hoge is heating up lately. He looked spectacular at the Valero Texas Open last we saw him en route to a T12 finish. He’s gained strokes on Approach in 7 consecutive starts now dating back to the WMPO and has shown flashes that the putter can get hot in that span. He doesn’t have great course history at the RBC Heritage, but his form now is arguably better than any previous year he’s come in to Hilton Head.
Hoge is not a long hitter, ranking 115th in the field in Driving Distance, so this short track should help level the playing field for him. That seemed to help at Pebble Beach anyway, where he recently finished T12. Distance aside, he ranks out a solid 24th in SG: APP, 45th SG: ARG, and 19th in Birdies Gained, which should set him up well here at Harbour Town.
Wesley Bryan (+60000)
I mean, what the hell is this number? Put some respect on the 2017 RBC Heritage champion’s name! Evidently we’ve stopped taking Wesley Bryan seriously after his strip tease at the Honda Classic, and maybe that’s deservedly so, but 600/1?!
Wesley Bryan is the quintessential fit for a player to win at the RBC Heritage. He’s a local South Carolinian (born in Columbia, went to school at the University of South Carolina) and doesn’t hit the ball far off the tee (#98 Driving Distance), but makes up for it with great Approach play (#24 APP).
The recent form is expectedly not great, but at this price, this is a bet on Course History and profile fit. Bryan’s never missed the cut at the RBC Heritage so this seems like a nice get-right spot to me.