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Wells Fargo Championship Expert Picks

Some high profile picks for a week in Charlotte.

Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

Wells Fargo Championship
When: May 5th -€” 8th

Where: Quail Hollow Club
2015 Winner: Rory McIlRoy (-21)


The format of this will go: I will select golfers based on the Yahoo format. I will select one A golfer, 2 B golfers and 1 C golfer that I think will do well as well as one dark horse pick, this should space out the selections and provide a vast field to select from for anyone who is in a format where you are limited to 10 starts per year.

Quall Hollow -€” Designed in 1962 by George Cobb, this 7,445 yard course has a USGA rating of 76.8. It features Bermuda and newly adjusted Mini Verdi Bermuda greens. The adjustment will help in warm weather and make them a bit quicker. Other recent adjustments reigned in greens to make them approachable for those willing and capable to make the shots. These changes to some degree helped Rory set a course record last year. The Green Mile starts on hole 16 and will generally run as make or break with water running alongside it and the green sitting next to the lake. A few trees run along the sides but by and large it's fairly open and favors those who can hit for distance.


A: 
Phil Mickelson -€” Yes, I am picking the guy who has missed two consecutive cuts (Masters, Valero Texas Open). Here are my reasons: 1. Prior to the two missed cuts here are his five previous tournaments: 13th (Shell Houston), 18th (Dell Match Play), 5th (Cadillac Championship), 37th (Honda Classic) and2nd (Pebble Beach). 2. here are his last 5 times at Wells Fargo Championship 4th (2015), 11th(2014), 3rd (2013), 26th (2012) and 9th (2010). 3. Phil is 41st in driving distance and 11th in strokes gained tee to green.

B: 
Rory McIlroy -€” He has finished in the top 10 in 3 of his last 4 tournaments.  He won here setting a course record last year, Prior to that he was 8th (2014), 10th (2013) and 2nd (2012). He's 13th right now in driving distance and 8th in strokes gained tee to green.

Justin Rose -€” Prior to his missed cut at Zurich he had two top ten finishes in over the 3 previous starts. Here is how he fared after the last 3 missed cuts: 6th, 13th, 2nd. He's only played here once in the last 3 years but it was a 5th place finish. He's showing good form after some rough play in 2015 and should be competitive here.

C:
Jamie Lovemark -€” I hope I'm not buying in too late on this stock but he's just been playing so well lately. The 8 year vet out of USC, he has 3 top 20 finishes in his last 4 starts. He's played here twice and missed the cut both times but his play is so strong right now and he has such power behind his drive (9th in driving distance) that I think he could be a top 20 finish at Wells Fargo.

Sleeper Pick:
Patrick Rodgers -€”
A true boom or bust pick, Patrick is a 2 year vet out of Stanford. To put his play in perspective, here is his last 10 starts: 31st, Cut, Cut, 21st, 20th, Cut, Cut, Cut, 17th, Cut. 10th, 44th, 10th, 20th. 13th.  He finished 2nd here last year behind his strong drive (23rdin distance) and ability to get to the green quickly (37th in stroked gained tee to green). His putting game is where he falls apart. 

Last tournament results -€” RBC Heritage (142 total) -€” Picks: Fowler, Donaldson, Tringale, Kaufman and Berger
A: 57th place
B: 24th place; 57th place
C: 140th place
Dark Horse: 14thplace

YTD Avg: (Average field of 127 people)
A: 40th place 
B: 36th place
C: 56thplace
Dark Horse: 45th place

Fun factoid about this tournament: Dale Douglass won the first official Tour event played at Quail Hollow Club in 1969. He earned $30,000 for this victory.