The first full-field event of 2017 is upon us as the PGA Tour heads to Hawaii for the Sony Open.
Our experts have put together the players they believe have the skills to succeed and provide big fantasy point totals. This week's panel is comprised of Bob Harig, Jonathan Coachman, Jason Sobel and Michael Collins, as well as FantasyGolfInsider's Jeff Bergerson, Zach Turcotte, Taras Pitra and Jason Rouslin.
Note: Golfer salaries listed are for DraftKings.
Jason Sobel: Jordan Spieth ($11,500)
My one rule at the Sony Open each year is to pick a player who's making the half-hour plane ride from Maui after playing the week before. Even though Waialae has little in common with Kapalua, just having gotten in 72 holes of competition and acclimated to the time difference should offer a small advantage over those who are fresh off a winter break. Spieth doesn't traditionally play the Sony, but it's a shorter course that suits strong ball-strikers and should fit him the minute he walks on property. Following a T-3 at Kapalua, he should be ready to finish a few notches higher against the year's first full field.
Jonathan Coachman: Spieth ($11,500)
I was pleasantly surprised that Jordan Spieth decided to play this week. And after last Friday's round when he said his game "was close," he went out and proved it. A birdie barrage and an 8-under 65 Sunday told me all I needed to know. This week the course is much tighter and more demanding. Spieth appears to be dialed in and prepared for a big year.
Bob Harig: Jimmy Walker ($9,900)
Two of Walker's six career PGA Tour victories have come at the Sony Open and Hawaii definitely seems to agree with him. He was in contention last week at Kapalua before finishing tied for ninth, where he also had a top-10 a year ago.
Michael Collins: Spieth ($11,500)
Seeing as he's never played the Sony Open before, the term "ignorance is bliss" comes to mind. This type of course is completely opposite to what he played last week at Kapalua. Waialae this week is a flat course with tiny greens and tough Bermuda grass rough. It plays right into Spieth's hands, which are magical around the greens.
Jeff Bergerson: Daniel Berger ($8,800)
We have our first full-field, cut event, which means we need to place a premium on guys who can make the cut and give us four full rounds of accumulating points. Daniel Berger made 23 cuts in 26 events last year, plus he offers a ton of upside. Last week he disappointed a bit in Maui by taking T-14, but by no means did he play poorly. I think a lot of attention will be off of Berger this week, which is why I like him in GPPs. Berger is an elite ball striker whose game sets up nicely for Waialae and I like him in cash games and GPPs this week.
Zachary Turcotte: Marc Leishman ($8,200)
The field is really deep this week and there is a lot of value in the middle salary ranges. Leishman stands out as a great option, particularly for owners looking to fill out their cash lineups with dependable cut makers that do have some potential upside. Leishman has not missed a cut at Waialae in seven starts with two top-10 finishes and has never finished lower than 37th. The big Aussie has the tee-to-green game and putter to keep him in the mix all weekend and should not be overlooked by those in search of solid value plays.
Taras Pitra: Hudson Swafford ($7,000)
Swafford makes his first appearance since the RSM Classic in November, so why do I call him a cash-game elite play? He's made his last 17 cuts and provides huge Thursday and Friday frustration when you don't pick him up when you see all the birdies he accumulates in the first two rounds. His only issue is keeping it together on the weekend, but as long as he's playing four days at this price, you're a happy camper.
Jason Rouslin: Charles Howell III ($7,800)
Want to talk about a course horse? Well, Howell is your guy. Ready for this? He's never missed a cut in eight starts with five top-10s -- four of which were top-5s. This will be his first start of the 2017 season, so there might be a little rust, however it's really hard to overlook his course history and his overall solid game. I think he gets another top-10 this week.