Putting woes continue as Tiger Woods fails to birdie at Quail Hollow

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The best thing Tiger Woods could say about his final round at the Wells Fargo Championship on Sunday was that it was over and that another tournament awaits this week.

Woods failed to make a birdie in a round for just the 11th time as a pro and the first time since the final round of the tournament at Doral in 2014. A few weeks after that, Woods had the first of four back surgeries.

There were no back issues to speak of this week at Quail Hollow, just a frustrating inability to find any comfort on the greens and just enough wayward shots that he made just 10 birdies for the week. His final-round 74 was his first score over par in 12 weekend rounds this year.

Aside from his missed cut at the Genesis Open, this will be Woods' worst finish of the year. His previous was the tie for 32nd last month at the Masters. He was tied for 24th at the Farmers Insurance Open, missed the cut at the Genesis, finished 12th at the Honda Classic, tied for second at the Valspar Championship and tied for fifth at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

"I hit the ball halfway decent today,'' he said. "Hit some good drives that just ended up off the fairway, some landed in the fairway, so I wasn't disappointed with that. Again, just not putting well and didn't make a birdie today. I got shut out.''

For the fourth straight day, Woods needed more than 30 putts in his round, taking 126 for the week. And after hitting 15 greens in regulation on Saturday, he managed just 10 on Sunday and hit only four fairways. He hit just 25 of 56 for the week.

As well as Woods is hitting the ball off the tee -- he averaged 313 yards from the tee -- he's not been accurate enough to give himself chances to hit it close. And when you're putting poorly, even hitting it close is no guarantee.

"A couple of them . .. (the par-5) 10 was a perfect example, I'm right there back of the green, easy chip, I leave it where I need to leave it right below the hole and I miss it. I just didn't hit good putts, and on top of that, the ones I did hit well, I didn't have enough speed on them.

"It's just one of those weeks and I'm on to the next week, which is nice. That's one of the great things about golf is that once the tournament's over, you're on to next week.''

And this week is the PGA Tour's signature event, the Players Championship at TPC-Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. Woods has not played there since 2015. He won the event in 2013 and in 2001 and was runner-up in 2000. His only other top-10 was in 2009.

"I think I need obviously to do some practicing with my putter, work on it just a little bit,'' Woods said. "But I know those greens, I know the putts. You have to hit the ball well there at the TPC. You can't get away with hitting it poorly. I'll still be grinding, working on my swing and making sure that's solid, driving the ball correctly because that golf course does demand everything.

"It's not so bad when you miss the greens if you miss them in the correct spots. It's one of those golf courses where when you're on, it seems so easy because every one of the balls funnels into the correct spot. If you're not on, then you're always in the wrong spot and it's a very difficult week."

The PGA Tour announced Sunday that Woods would play the first two rounds of the Players Championship with Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler.