Caves Valley Golf Club in Owings Mills, Maryland, hosts the top 70 golfers in the season-long FedEx Cup standings for this week’s BMW Championship. The top 30 golfers after this week will advance to next week’s Tour Championship. Below, we look at the fantasy golf power rankings for the 2021 BMW Championship, with PGA Tour picks and predictions.
Tony Finau won last week’s weather-delayed Northern Trust in a playoff over Cameron Smith to snap a five-year winless drought and move into the top spot in the FedEx Cup standings. Smith moved from 16th to third while Collin Morikawa slipped from first to sixth and Jordan Spieth fell from second to seventh.
Jon Rahm, who remains No. 1 in the Golfweek/Sagarin world rankings, finished third last week to move to second in the standings.
Caves Valley is hosting the penultimate event of the PGA Tour season for the first time. The Tom Fazio design measures 7,542 yards and plays to a par of 72.
2021 BMW Championship: Fantasy Golf Top 20
20. Shane Lowry (+4000)
The Irishman tied for 11th last week to move from 66th to 47th in the season-long standings. He has been better with his irons than his driver this season but the wide landing areas won’t punish him as much for his inaccuracy off the tee.
19. Sungjae Im (+6000)
Finished T-47 or better in eight straight events including a T-8 at the Rocket Mortgage Classic and a T-16 last week. His short game has been a weakness for much of the season but he has gotten by with 0.60 Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee per round.
18. Hideki Matsuyama (+4000)
The Masters champion has just two other top-10 finishes this season but remains 16th in the season-long race after a T-43 finish last week. His irons are a strength at any new venue.
17. Sam Burns (+5000)
Twelfth in the FedEx Cup standings with one win and six other top-10 finishes this season, including a co-runner-up finish at the FedEx St. Jude Invitational. He’s averaging 0.27 SG: Off-the-Tee per round despite ranking 132nd in driving accuracy.
16. Daniel Berger (+3000)
Hasn’t missed a cut since the Masters in April with four top-10 finishes in his last nine events; however, he finished just T-56 last week following a T-5 at the WGC-Invitational event. Can rely on his approach game and putting without course history.
15. Louis Oosthuizen (+3000)
Took the last two weeks off of competitive play due to a neck injury but remains 11th in the season-long standings with eight top-10 finishes. He leads all qualified golfers with 0.93 SG: Putting per round for the season and his T-3 at the British Open shows he can hang with the bombers on long courses when healthy.
14. Scottie Scheffler (+3000)
In a PGA Tour season that has been largely about long winless droughts coming to their ends, Scheffler remains one of the biggest names on Tour looking for his first career victory. He’s 14th in the Golfweek rankings and 24th in the FedEx Cup standings.
13. Viktor Hovland (+3000)
Shot a final-round 77 Monday to fall to a T-43 finish after opening 68-67-65 at the Northern Trust. He remains 14th in the FedEx Cup race and much of the success in his young career has come in his first time at a course while excelling from tee to green.
12. Patrick Cantlay (+2000)
Slipped from third to fourth in the FedEx Cup standings last week despite a strong T-11 showing. He’s third on Tour in total strokes gained on the field per round.
11. Justin Thomas (+2000)
Jumped from ninth to fifth in the standings with a T-4 showing last week. Always one of the best on Tour with his irons, he’s just 173rd in driving accuracy but won’t be as punished at Caves Valley.
10. Jordan Spieth (+2000)
Finished 73rd in the 125-man field last week with a closing-round 79 which included back-to-back triple bogeys.
He still comes to Caves Valley GC sixth in the Golfweek rankings and seventh in the FedEx Cup standings. His occasionally wayward driver won’t lead to the same trouble here and he can rely on his short game.
9. Xander Schauffele (+1500)
The Olympic gold medalist tied for 16th last week at Liberty National Golf Club. He’s second on Tour in total strokes gained per round this season with a well-balanced game.
8. Collin Morikawa (+2000)
The two-time major winner missed the cut last week for the first time in 2021. He finished outside of the top 40 in each of the two events preceding his victories this season so the disappointing result last week can make him a savvy contrarian fantasy play.
7. Rory McIlroy (+2000)
The bomber-style venue should free things up for the former world No. 1 who has struggled with the driver once again since returning to the winner’s circle at the Wells Fargo Championship. At No. 28 in the season-long standings, he needs a strong result this week to secure his standing for East Lake.
6. Tony Finau (+3000)
This could be a rare instance where it’s profitable to go straight back to last week’s winner. Many have long said the floodgates would open once Finau got his next win. In addition to his dominant ball-striking, he’s averaging 0.47 SG: Off-the-Tee per round.
5. Cameron Smith (+2000)
Up to 11th in the Golfweek rankings and 23rd in the Official World Golf Ranking following a playoff loss last week. It was his sixth top-10 finish of 2021 in addition to victory at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans team event.
4. Dustin Johnson (+2000)
Slipped from 17th to 22nd in the FedEx Cup race with a missed cut last week and another would likely knock him out of contention for a repeat FedEx Cup win. The longer venue better fits his game and the reigning Player of the Year is still fourth in total strokes gained per round.
3. Brooks Koepka (+2000)
Tied for 31st last week but remains comfortably inside the top 30 for the Tour Championship at 15th in the standings. His lackluster 0.08 SG: Around-the-Green won’t be as much of a disadvantage as usual with no one familiar with the course.
2. Bryson DeChambeau (+2000)
A T-31 finish last week was the latest in a series of disappointing results since his collapse at the US Open, outside of a T-8 at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. However, no one in the field is better suited to the added length at Caves Valley and the open landing areas will free him up off the tee.
1. Jon Rahm (+600)
The No. 1 player in the Golfweek rankings and OWGR is once again a heavy better favorite as the only player in the 70-man field with odds lower than +1500. Last week’s “slip” with a closing round of 69 could help keep his popularity down in fantasy lineups.
Gannett may earn revenue from audience referrals to betting services. Newsrooms are independent of this relationship and there is no influence on news coverage. This information is for entertainment purposes only. We make no representations or warranties as to the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of any content.
'When Will Tony Finau Win Again?': Musician Sam Harrop makes good on request to write victory lyrics
World No. 1 Jon Rahm's abnormal 2021 continues this week in BMW Championship at Caves Valley
BMW Championship tee times, TV info for Thursday's first round