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Quicken Loans National: Expert Picks

US Open hangover at one of the five invitational tournaments presents a good chance to see the smaller names shine.

Rafael Suanes-USA TODAY Sports

Quicken Loans National
When: June 23rd - 26th
Where: Congressional CC
2015 Winner: Troy Merritt (-18)


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.

Congressional Country Club Blue Course-€” Designed by Robert Trent in 1957, most of the course utilizes bent grass. It was redesigned to add bunkers, speed up the greens and make the fairways more precise. Accuracy is needed further up the fairways approaching the greens as a combination of rolling hills with the bunkers make it excellent for players drop it on the green but dreadful for any erroneous shots. Add to it the distance of the course and you need someone who has a strong drive but also a good approach to the green.


A: 
Justin Thomas -€” He's had a very up and down season but he played well at this course here last year (his only PGA time) finishing 4th. He is one of the more accurate players approaching the green and has a great drive. As long as his drive isn't inaccurate than he will succeed. 

B: 
Ryan Palmer -€” 3 top 25 finishes in his last 5 starts? Not too shabby. He's got a great drive but like Thomas not accurate. His approach the green is average. His history here isn't much to go off - 55th finish in 2014. Banking on his recent strong play.

Jason Kokrak  -€” I will preface this pick with, he's the inverse of everything I used to pick Ryan so i'll be curious which tactic worked better. Kokrak's last five tournaments: US Open (37th), Memorial (MC), Dean and Deluca (55th), Players Championship (W/D) and Wells Fargo (MC). BUT with that said his last two appearances here were top 20 finishes. As for his play it's much like Palmer and Thomas, strong drive, not accurate but average to good approach to the greens.

C:
Bill Haas-€” Much like Kokrak - no decent finishes lately but he has success here. Last two years were a 4th adn 30th place finish. He's one of the best in the game approaching the green, that should give him the edge over the field here.

Sleeper Pick:
Sean O'Hair -€”
Sean is a different pick amongst the others on this list. He can hit a powerful drive but his approach to the green is actually pretty bad. What he lacks there he makes up for being amongst the best scramblers on the tour right now from his sand save percentage to his short chips. His history here isn't great but he's shown flashes of decent play lately.

Last tournament results -€” US Open (156 total) -€” Picks: Day, Snedeker Westwood, Horschel, Van Zyl
A: 8th place
B: 32nd place; 107th place
C: 32nd place
Dark Horse: 105th place

YTD Avg: (Average field of 132 people)
A: 33rd place 
B: 37th place
C: 54th place
Dark Horse: 50th place

Fun factoid about this tournament: PGA is not a fan of ending courses on par 3's as they are anti-climatic so they reversed the 18th hole making it the 10th hole and reconfiguring the course.