Open Championship DraftKings Picks

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

DraftKings picks for the Open Championship

I am back for the week, know that a lot of folks were wondering if I was doing Draftkings picks anymore, the answer is yes, but not right now. First of all this is the busiest time of the year for me with commitments during the U.S. Open, Open Championship and PGA Championship. Making things harder, 4 months ago planned to spend a week in Ireland and France after the British Open. But when I made the plans didn’t expect to selling my house with a August 1st settlement date, so am a bit stretch.
But to tell you the truth, I haven’t played DraftKings since the U.S. Open. One the reasons, I hit a streak of about 4 weeks in row of too many folks missing the cut. When five out of my six picks missed the cut at Erin Hills I just took some time off to rejuvenate the projection cells in my mind and go back to better picks. So let’s see if I get it like for this week’s British Open.

British Open picks
Lot’s of games to chose from including the big $3.1 million game. Pick six of the right guys and you could be in the running for the million dollar first price check. Unfortunately it’s a drastic slide down the earnings trail 2nd place pays $150,000, 3rd $75,000 and 4th is down to $40,000. So at the end of Sunday a putt could be worth up to $950,000 to someone. I can only wish that DraftKings would have better payouts in a $33 game, gosh you finish 26th it only pays $1,500. The game is open to 110,000 players so the odds aren’t good, to win the million all six of your picks will have to be in the top-eight just to have a chance, that is hard.
So let’s get to the picks, Dustin Johnson is the top-dog at $12,000 followed by Jordan Spieth at $11,600, then Jon Rahm at $11,400, Rory McIlroy at $11,000, Sergio Garcia at 10,600, Justin Rose at $10,300, Jason Day at $10,000, Tommy Fleetwood at $9,800 and defending champion Henrik Stenson at $9,600. I can say this, like all of the picks except for Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Henrik Stenson. Just heard McIlroy in an interview saying his game is close, but his putting has been the problem and I can’t see it turning around for this week. It’s funny, you listen to all of these guys and they sound so believable and you want to run down and place 50 pounds on Rory to win.
As I have said many times in this column, if you are struggling putting six guys together your not going to have a winner. Before I went to bed on Monday I turned on my Ipad to just check to see the prices of players, and it was like I had a rubik’s cube that I put together in 2 minutes. In 2 minutes I just randoming picked some of the guys that I like and was shocked that I had all of my picks and money wise spent $200 below the cap.
My first pick was Sergio Garcia at $10,600. I like the compression to 1998 when Mark O’Meara finally won his first major at Augusta after close to 20 year wait for a major. Then he won at Birkdale, in tough weather conditions. I see a bit of déjà vu in Garcia, saw him at the English golf writers dinner Tuesday nightand he couldn’t be more relaxed and ready to go. So he is my top pick. Next up was Paul Casey at $8,100, gosh he was cheap. I like the fact that he has been in the top-26 in his last seven starts. This includes a 6th at the Masters and T-5th in his last start at the Travelers. If that isn’t enough Casey was T-7th at Birkdale in 2008 so he has the right numbers. My next pick was Tommy Fleetwood at $9,800. He could be the hotters gold right now. He was T-10th in Ireland, won in France, was T-6th at the BMW International and 4th at the U.S. Open. His season was already a big success before that winning at Abu Dhabi and runner-up at the WGC-Mexico. He has a home near Birkdale and I think will be very good this week. Next up was easy, again was surprised to see Ian Poulter at $7,500. Now I know that Poulter is a free sprint and that he may not be the best in the clutch. Also know that he sometimes doesn’t take things seriously enough, but since he has fought back from injury has tried to establish himself. He was T-2nd at Players and last week at the Scottish Open played well early only to shot 71-74 over the weekend. What I remember is how close Poulter came to winning the 2013 Open at Muirfield and was runner-up at Birkdale in 2008. So I see some great things this week from Ian. Down to two picks and only $14,000 left in my salary cap. While looking around for Poulter, I stumbled on Padraig Harrington being just $7,5000. He won at Birkdale in 2008 so he knows the course. His year was curtailed due to a pinch nerve in his neck which required surgery in March and when he came back at the FedEx St. Jude was hit in the elbow, which wasn’t serious but he need six stitches to fix. But I like that in links courses he was T-42nd at the Irish Open and T-4th last week in the Scottish Open and that was with a 3rd round 79. So Padraig is really. So that left me with one pick and only $6,800. But it took ten seconds to supposedly find Ryan Fox with a $6,600 price tag. Not many people know of this European but he was 6th at the French Open, T-4th at the Irish Open and T04th at the Scottish Open. His only black mark is him not playing in the British before, but remember I am looking for someone that finishes in the top-ten not win.
So there you have it, six players that I picked for this week, who are your six picks?

Sergio Garcia at $10,600

Tommy Fleetwood at $9,800

Paul Casey at $8,100

Ian Poulter at $7,500

Padraig Harrington at $7,5000. He won

Ryan Fox with a $6,600


  1. Sal, good to see you back in the game! I have very similar picks to you but can’t agree with Tommy as his Open record is shocking, 3 missed cuts out of 3 equals too big a risk for me regardless of his red hot form. Will send you a h2h invite, may the best man win!

  2. Michael C says

    Of the chalk, I like Spieth & Rose. Long shot is Streb, and vet R. Bland. Others to consider are Koepka, Finau & Holmes, even though he hits it so high. Good luck!

  3. Matt W:
    Guess you are right on Tommy Fleetwood, very frustrating to see him play well all summer and come to a course he has played a lot on and have him shooting 76. Making matters worst, he is about to play in the toughest conditions of the day. Bad weather is about to come in and I can see that those in the afternoon will have a tough time.

  4. says

    Sergio hasn’t played well and missed many cuts since last years Marriage and lack of sleep most likely the new child so Until he becomes focused again I’ll pass and stay with Rory since he’s having a Great Year and most likely be #1 by years end since D. J. can ‘t put 4 rounds together.

  5. You can stick a for fork into Sergio, I think he is close to done

  6. says

    Sergio become engaged and then married this distraction would also explain last year’s problems with Rory’s game and his overall improved stats this year. You eariler mentioned that Spieth was perhaps done this year? I’d say it’s personal the engagement and marriage, he’s one of the best techinial players to come around the last 20 years.
    Another example for the very gifted players rarely considered is ” non stat game” which can either work to their advantage or against them such as “Ridum” or ability to play within themselves on what may appears to be a off day.

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