We’re in Texas for the third time this year, this time for the AT&T Byron Nelson, one week before the PGA Championship. It’s a chance for guys to gain form and iron out any wrinkles before having a shot at a career changing tournament. With a third place finish last week, we just missed out on Justin Rose cashing out with +1100 odds.
Here are five golfers to consider throwing on your card this week.
Brooks Koepka, +650 - Brooks Koepka is the best player in what’s a watered down field, as he’s missed the cut just once since August and is consistently pushing the leaderboard, which includes a runner-up finish in the Masters and the Honda Classic. Koepka was a runner-up here in 2016 and has made the cut in three of his four trips overall. You don’t often see such heavy favorites in golf, so getting Koepka at this price is worth a play, even if the odds aren’t paying out what others would.
Charles Howell III, +4500 - Charles Howell III has missed the cut in each of his last two tournaments and hasn’t had a top-25 finish in stroke play since Arnold Palmer. It’s understandable to not even look Howell’s way this week. The good news is that Howell has made the cut in seven of his eight appearances at the AT&T Byron Nelson and has finished in the top-10 in three of the last four trips. Howell has also gone from not making the cut to a victory recently when he won the RSM Classic. Howell and these odds are a terrific value play.
Hideki Matsuyama, +1600 - Hideki Matsuyama has just one appearance at the Byron Nelson, and that was a 16th place finish last year. Matsuyama has been one of the more consistent golfers on the tour these last several months, as he hasn’t missed a cut since The Open and has finished 33rd or better in each of his last nine tournaments. Matsuyama is also 17th in driving distance, which is always key at the Trinity Forest Golf Club due to a lot of lengthy holes.
Marc Leishman, +2800 - Marc Leishman has certainly had his struggles lately, but when he plays well, he plays well, which includes top-10 finishes in six events since October and a win at the CIMB Classic. Leishman is also no stranger to success at the Byron Nelson, as he finished runner-up here last year and had top-three finishes in 2012 and 2014. In seven times making the cut at this event, Leishman is averaging a finish of 7.5. There’s good reason to back the Aussie this week.
Kevin Na, +4000 - After some issues with form and a few missed cuts, Kevin Na seems to be putting it together again, and that includes a -7 and top-10 finish at the RBC Heritage. Na finished sixth at the Byron Nelson last year and that could be a sign he’s finally figured some things out on this course in his fifth appearance. In a wide open field with many top players sitting this one out, this is a good spot for somebody like Na to make a run. I have a feeling this could be a good week for Na.