PGA First Look: Valspar Championship

Welcome to our First look at this week’s PGA Tour event on FantasyDraft.  It’s a home game for me this week (I get to see Tiger in person!!!) as the PGA Tour stops over in Palm Harbor, FL – about 15 minutes from my house.  The Copperhead course at Innisbrook Resort is no joke of a course demanding players find fairways often and forcing them to club down more than a handful of times.  There are also some reasonable elevation changes which are unique to Florida golf.  It’s a solid test of golf. I’ll be out there at least Friday and Saturday so hit me up on Twitter @msmithwc if you’re around!

Course Information:

Course: Copperhead Course @ Innisbrook Resort, Palm Harbor, FL
Yardage/Par: Par 71, 7,340 Yards
Scoring Expectation: Low.  No room for messing around with winners typically less than -10. (last year played very easy for Copperhead, particularly Rd 1)

Greens: TifEagle Bermuda
Weather: Variable.  Thursday looks ok – with moderate winds.  Friday and Saturday look like pretty days with minimal winds.  Then Sunday looks nasty with thunderstorms and strong winds.  Keep a close eye on it.

We’ve released the FireCharts series to the public!  For a quick guide to what they’re all about, check out this post.  FireStats now included!

Last Week’s Cash Lineup:

No Cut Events are so narrow with their results.  I didn’t manage anything this week – ending up less than 20 points outside of the cash lines.  Flipping Rafa in for Woodland would have made a 100% difference in the results, that’s just how no cut events can go sometimes.  I liked both, just ended up on the wrong one for cash going with the guy who I thought could do more scoring at this track. Now, this week’s picks!

Golfers to Consider:


Sergio Garcia ($16,700)

This course was made for Sergio. Past winners have peppered the smaller greens with irons and that’s exactly what Sergio does best. Fresh off a Top 10 last week with the best players in the world Sergio has a great chance to find the winner’s circle on the PGA Tour for the first time this season.

Paul Casey ($15,700)

We had to send a search party out to find Paul Casey after Thursday’s round last week, but luckily they were able to locate the real Paul Casey.  From then on he rallied to a 12th place finish.  We talked about how important fairways are and Casey is peppering them at the moment, per his typical self.  That is going to give him a huge advantage to hold the greens at Copperhead across the 4 days and should set him up for a nice amount of birdie looks.

Steve Stricker ($14,200)

On the surface, we see just 1 for 2 since 2013 on cuts made here at Copperhead for Stricker.  He came out terribly in his opening round last year with a 75 and followed it up with a 69 which left him a few shots outside of the cut line.  But even considering that he’s done really well in his trips here from a statistical standpoint – hitting above average Fairways and Greens.  It’s a nice savings all the way down to $14,200 and someone I’ll be considering this week.

Charles Howell III ($13,600)

CH3 fell victim to an absolutely horrible putter last time out at Honda.  He’s not traditionally an extraordinary putter but usually keeps it pretty average with his putter as you can see below.  What he excels at is T2G and that was no different at Honda actually gaining more than 2 strokes per round in his short 2-day stint. I’m going to roll him with confidence at a track he’s done very well at in the past with this discounted priced.

Good luck and head on over to and create a FREE ACCOUNT for access to a full range of content as the week goes on to help you make sound investment decisions and build that bankroll!  Roger Casey (@LatticeProject) offers a Full Investment Guide on Wednesday’s with our preferred cash game plays specifically for FantasyDraft and GPP strategy.  Check it out!

Mark Smith

Mark Smith is a contributor at You can find him on FantasyDraft as smithma3 and on Twitter @msmithwc

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