A field of 156 players will take the field this week for the FedEx St. Jude Classic. Players are hoping to use any success in this tournament for next week’s U.S. Open. The good thing about this week is that this is a tough course and there aren’t many huge names participating, which opens the door for a huge payout if you can correctly pick the winner.
At most books, the favorite is sitting with odds of +1400, and I’ll take those odds all day long.
Let’s take a look at three guys who could surprise and win this year’s FedEx St. Jude Classic.
Ryan Palmer – Due to this course being one of the smallest on tour, you want a golfer who can consistently find the green. Palmer only has three career PGA tour wins under his belt, but he’s finished fourth and third in the FedEx St. Jude Classic the last two years. Palmer is also due for his first PGA win since 2010, as he has two top two finishes this season and five top 10 finishes. If there’s any course that Palmer is capable of sealing the deal, it’d be this one given the history. Getting him at odds of +2000 is certainly worth a pretty penny, as his odds seem to be greater than that.
Paul Casey – Casey showed just the player he’s capable of being at The Memorial. A player who has battled multiple injuries and just went through a divorce, Casey is back on the green healthy and really turning heads this season. In 10 PGA events, Casey has finished in the Top 25 six times, including four Top 20 finishes in his last five starts. Casey has just one PGA Tour win, which came at the Shell Houston Open back in 2009, but this is a course that’s absolutely wide open to anybody. I’ll throw Casey a bone at odds of +3500 with the way he’s played this season.
Phil Mickelson – It’s not very often you get one of the best players in the world at odds of +1600. OK, Mickelson hasn’t played great this season and is now dealing with off the course distractions. However, Mickelson is the highest rated player in this event and is due for a great performance heading into the U.S. Open. Mickelson has just six Top 25 performances in 13 events and has missed the cut three times this season. He’s shown little signs of being able to turn those numbers around, but you’d feel like a real fool if he’s able to use these distractions as motivation and ends up winning this tournament. Throw a few dollars on Mickelson for old times’ sake.