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Farmers Insurance Open: Expert Picks

Time for Dustin's first win of 2017?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

What: Farmers Insurance Open
When: January 26-29th
Where: Torrey Pines
2015 Winner: Brandt Snedeker
Purse: $6.7MM (Winner: $1.2MM)

I will be mirroring the format for last year. It follows Yahoo's Fantasy Golf where you pick 2 A Golfers, 4 B Golfers and 2 C Golfers. As such I will pick one from A, 2 from B and 1 from C (as if they were your starters) along with one Dark Horse pick. It is my aim to do two things -€" first, select golfers who will do well. These golfers will not always win but it is my aim to keep the selections to golfers who make the cut and will be competitive down the stretch on Sunday. Second -€select golfers who aren't always the obvious choice. If you are playing the Yahoo format or even the PGA fantasy league than you are severely limited on starts. It does no good to name Dustin Johnson or Jordan Spieth every week. I will make sure my picks as low as possible and spread the field out to introduce new names.

Course: Torrey Pines -€” Created in 1957 by William F Bell and redesigned by Rees Jones in 2001, this 7,600 course (longest on PGA tour) runs right along the Pacific Ocean. They host canyons and thick grass along the perimeter, given the longevity, they require a long shot off the tee and while they are fairly open for the more inaccurate tee shots, there are traps placed throughout to trip up the golfers not prepared. The greens can run into the ocean and it's best to fall short.


Dustin Johnson. Everyone is going with Jason Day, I say go with the guy whose game is built for the course. This is the longest course on the tour and guess what, Dustin has one of the longest drives in the game.


Brandt Snedeker. This is the obvious pick for most people. Won it last year, 19th in 2015, MC in 2014, 2nd in 2013 and 1st in 2012.

Hudson Swafford. I'm deviating from the collective a bit here and using my second pick on Hudson in just 4 tournaments. He's 11th on the tour in driving distance, and he finished 13th here last year (but he did miss the cut the two years prior). He's fresh off a win at the Career Builder. Let's see how he does this week.


Scott Stallings. After 4 consecutive missed cuts, he is working his way back this season with a 70th place finish followed by a 8th place at CareerBuilder. That is not why I picked him though, his track record here is great -€” 25th in 2016, 2nd in 2015 and 1st in 2014.

Dark Horse.

Smylie Kaufman. Yes he's on the A -€” list for this tournament but few people pay attention to him. If you don't want to use the pick on Day or Dustin, go with Smylie. 4th on the tour in drive distance, made the cut in his last 7 straight cuts and is primed to be a breakout candidate this year.