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Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter?

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Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter?

Another week, another FedEx Cup Playoff event. This time the PGA Tour heads to Boston for the Deutsche Bank Championship where Rickie Fowler is the defending champion. We got a big boy winner in Round 1 (Patrick Reed) which often doesn’t happen because of field size.

As these fields get whittled down, the cream should rise even more.

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Let’s take a look at this week’s contest.

What: Deutsche Bank Championship | Where: Boston, Massachusetts | When: Sept. 2-5

How to watch (all times ET):

TV: Golf Channel (Friday-Saturday from 2:30-6:30 p.m., Sunday from 1-3 p.m. and Monday from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.) and NBC (Sunday from 3-6 p.m. and Monday from 1:30-6 p.m.)

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Participants and odds

  • Jason Day: 13-2
  • Dustin Johnson: 9-1
  • Jordan Spieth: 12-1
  • Rory McIlroy: 12-1
  • Henrik Stenson: 16-1
  • Rickie Fowler: 20-1
  • Adam Scott: 22-1
  • Patrick Reed: 22-1
  • Justin Rose: 25-1
  • Bubba Watson: 33-1
  • Phil Mickelson: 33-1
  • Sergio Garcia: 33-1

Field strength: A+

When Garcia, Mickelson and Watson are all 33-1 to win a tournament, that’s a freaking tournament. It’s been interesting to watch Day separate himself from the rest of the top players from a Vegas standpoint. Books are clearly wary of somebody who is having one of the greatest putting seasons in recent memory, and the odds certainly reflect that.

Story to watch: The story to watch this week is going to be the same story we’ll be watching over the next three tournaments. Who is going to be a captain’s pick for the 2016 United States Ryder Cup team?

“Rickie [Fowler] is trending up,” said U.S. captain Davis Love III on Monday. “That’s the great thing. I look, he’s going into some tournaments that really suit him. He’s playing very, very well. And you look at right on down the list, when you watch The Barclays as a whole … We have a lot of guys that are playing very, very well, and I keep saying, past eight, we’ve got literally got 80 guys on that points list. OK 40, because they are American players, but there are a lot of guys that could play their way on.”

So what will the process be for deciding who to pick?

“The statisticians are going to help us with this, but those eight players on our team and the four assistant captains, they are pretty good golfers,” added Love. “They know what’s going on. They know the players. They know who they want to play with. But if we’re looking for one particular reason to choose between two guys, then we’re going to dive into the stats a little bit more.

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“Are we looking for a great wedge player to match up with this guy; are we looking for a great driver to match up with another guy. Our alternate-shot is a big part of how we pair, how we pick. So it’s going to be looking at Hazeltine, how it suits certain players. I think there’s going to be two obvious picks, and there’s going to be two we’re going to have to waffle about a little bit. The stats will help us narrow that down.”

Past winners

  • 2015: Rickie Fowler
  • 2014: Chris Kirk
  • 2013: Henrik Stenson
  • 2012: Rory McIlroy
  • 2011: Webb Simpson

A pretty strong list, and it includes my pick for this week.

Expert Picks (Kyle Porter)

Player Pick Analysis Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Winner Rory McIlroy will win by five if he putts at all. If he putts averagely, he’ll be in one of the final three groups on Sunday. I’m essentially betting that he’ll have an outlier week with the flat stick, and get his first win of the 2015-16 season. Odds: 12-1 Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Top 10 Rickie Fowler is coming off his best performance in months, and is the defending champion here. As I noted above, he has more to play for than just $1.5 million. Odds: 20-1 Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Sleeper Gary Woodland has three top 5s since June. I had to look that up because I didn’t believe 60stoday.com’s Rob Bolton when he said it. He’s coming off a top five at The Barclays and can thrust himself into the Hazeltine talk with a W. Odds: 70-1

Expert Picks (Robby Kalland)

Player Pick Analysis Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Winner Henrik Stenson is the 2013 Deutsche Bank Championship winner and finished second to Fowler last year. With his history at this event and the way he’s playing this year, I feel pretty good about his chances this week. Odds: 16-1 Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Top 10 Jason Day has finished in the top 15 here in four of his last five appearances and he’s really, really, really good. Odds: 13-2 Deutsche Bank Championship expert picks: Can Rory McIlroy find a putter? Sleeper William McGirt was T12 here last year and has been steady all season on the PGA Tour, occasionally popping up into contention for wins. At 125-1, he’s worth a look. Odds: 80-1

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