World No. 1 Dustin Johnson highlights a surprisingly strong field at TPC San Antonio for the Valero Texas Open. Corey Conners returns to defend his 2019 title after this event was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below, we look at the 2021 Valero Texas Open odds and make our PGA Tour picks and predictions to win.
Johnson, who’s first in the Golfweek/Sagarin world rankings, is this week’s betting favorite at +650 as he makes his final preparations for the 2021 Masters Tournament next week. He’ll defend his green jacket and his questionable motivation for this week makes him a risky bet at the low odds.
Valero Texas Open picks – Favorite
Corey Conners (+2200)
Conners won by two strokes at minus-20 in 2019. That followed a T-26 finish in 2018, and he ranks second to only Johnson in this field with an average of 2.55 strokes gained per round at TPC San Antonio.
While the venue typically requires excellent play around the greens, Conners won here in 2019 with 2.89 Strokes Gained: Approach and 3.59 SG: Tee-to-Green per round, while losing 0.38 strokes per round around-the-green. He’s averaging 0.04 SG: Around-the-Green with 0.80 SG: Approach and 1.47 SG: Tee-to-Green on the 2020-21 PGA Tour season.
The Canadian finished third and seventh in strong fields at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and The Players Championship, respectively. He tied for 10th at the 2020 Masters in the fall and will return to Augusta National Golf Club in strong form.
Valero Texas Open picks – Contender
Andrew Putnam (+6600)
Putnam has been off for two weeks following a missed cut at The Players Championship. He had previously tied for fifth at the Puerto Rico Open and for fourth at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and has three top-10 finishes in eight events this year.
He played in each of the past two runnings of this event with a T-8 finish in 2018 and a T-36 in 2019. Putnam excelled on the greens in each of those two events, and he’s averaging 0.59 strokes gained per round with the flat stick this season.
Valero Texas Open picks – Long shot
Gary Woodland (+10000)
Woodland has slipped to No. 127 in the Golfweek rankings while battling injuries for most of the past two years but this is still a disrespectful price for the former US Open champ. He tied for 16th against a comparable field at The American Express in January.
His main struggles this season have been with his putter and driver, but he’ll be able to rely on his still-above-average iron play this week.
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