Scottsdale, Arizona – It’s time for our 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open picks and there’s no shortage of story lines as the PGA Tour returns to the Arizona desert.

On top of the agenda is whether Brandt Snedeker, last week’s winner in San Diego at the Farmers Insurance Open, can keep rolling.  That roll has seen him finish in the Top 3 in all three events he’s played in 2016.  The Nashville native has moved up 37 spots in the Official World Golf Ranking to #12 since the start of the year, and sits second in the Fantasy Golf Rankings.

Another story line will be trying to figure out which Rickie Fowler will show up in Scottsdale this week. Will it be the player who delivered a statement victory in Abu Dhabi against a strong field?  Or will it be the guy who failed to make the cut last week in San Diego.  Let’s give young Rickie the benefit of the doubt, and write off his poor performance last week to a combination of celebration and jet lag.  We predict he will be better this week.

With a strong field that includes 10 of the Top 25 players in the World, led by the fourth ranked Bubba Watson, and defending champion Brooks Koepka, we’re expecting another exciting event. So without further adieu, here is our 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open Picks.

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There’s a new name on top, in the weekly Fantasy Golf Rankings, February 2, 2016 edition.

South African Branden Grace, fresh off defending his title at the European Tour’s Commercial Bank Qatar Masters on Saturday, has reached the top, knocking last week’s leader Jordan Spieth down to #3.

Grace is up to #11 in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) after an impressive stretch of golf that includes six straight Top 10 finishes. It was the 27-year old Pretoria native’s first win since last year’s Qatar Masters.

The weekend’s other big winner, American Brandt Snedeker, moves up to second in the weekly rankings, jumping 12 spots from #14. The 2012 Fed Ex Cup champion won the Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego on Monday for his 8th PGA tour win. It was the 35-year old’s third top three finish of 2016 after his 2nd place showing at the Sony Open and a third-place effort at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions.

Spieth is still number one in the OWGR, and wasn’t exactly idle on the weekend, placing second in the Singapore Open, a non-ranking event co-sponsored by the Japanese and Asian Tours.

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It’s another golf Saturday and time again for the Moving Day Fantasy Golf Report, Saturday, January 30, 2016 edition.

Here are the big stories from the world of fantasy golf that we noticed heading into championship weekend.

Dustin in Contention in San Diego

American Gary Woodland and Korea’s K.J. Choi are leading the Farmer’s Insurance Open at -9 after 36 holes, but the player generating the excitement is the eighth ranked player in the Official World Golf Ranking, Dustin Johnson.

Johnson sits one shot back of the leading duo after a six-under par 66 on Friday. The 31-year old hasn’t won since last March at the World Golf Championships Cadillac Championship and is probably due for a win.  A victory this weekend would give him 10 career PGA Tour titles.

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San Diego, Ca – The PGA Tour returns to historic Torrey Pines this week for the 2016 Farmers Insurance Open.

Seven-time champion Tiger Woods is not in the field this year, due to his well documented back troubles, but a suddenly in form three time champion is one of the 156 players who will tee it up on Thursday.  Of course, we are speaking of Phil Mickelson who may well be a contender this week, after a strong showing at last week’s Career Builder Challenge.

Other notable players in the field include the second ranked player in the Official World Golf Ranking, and the tournament’s defending champion, Jason Day, and world #4 Rickie Fowler, fresh of a win in Abu Dhabi last week.

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American Jordan Spieth didn’t win in Abu Dhabi, but his tie for fifth was enough to vault him back to the top of Razzball’s Fantasy Golf Rankings, January 25, 2016 edition.

The number one player in the Official World Golf Ranking has a narrow 22 point lead over South Africa’s Branden Grace, who matched Spieth’s 5th place finish in the first leg of the European Tour’s desert swing.

Last week’s leader, Patrick Reed dropped to #3 after a disappointing 56th place finish at the PGA Tour stop in La Quinta, California. The placing snapped a string of seven consecutive Top 10 finishes for the young American.

Fowler, McIlroy Move Up

Abu Dhabi winner Rickie Fowler jumped from 25th to 4th in the weekly rankings, after recording his fourth win since May. Former number one, Rory McIlroy, completes the Top 5, moving up a spot after a strong 3rd place finish in the same event.

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Sunday Fantasy Golf Update, January 24, 2016

With another championship Sunday upon us, it’s time for our weekly Sunday Fantasy Golf Update, January 24, 2016 edition.

Fowler Wins Sunday Shootout in Abu Dhabi

All the pre-tournament hype was about the showdown between the number one player in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), Jordan Spieth and #3 Rory McIlroy. But it was the world’s sixth ranked player who stole the show on Sunday at Abu Dhabi.

American Rickie Fowler shot a final round 69 to emerge on top of a crowded leaderboard and win the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. He finished one shot ahead of Germany’s Thomas Pieters. Pieters, himself coming off a break-out season that saw him win twice on the European Tour in 2015, shot a final round 67.

It was Fowler’s first win of the 2015-2016 season after three victories in 2015, and will once again start the discussion of expanding the so-called “Big Three” to a Big Four at the top of the world of golf. To add fuel to the fire, the win moved the Murrieta, California native to 4th in the OWGR, setting up a season long battle between the four twenty-somethings.

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Despite a relaxing week away from the course, American Patrick Reed remains number one in our weekly Fantasy Golf Rankings January 18, 2016 edition.

The 25-year old has 2,388 points, 325 more than second-place Brenden Grace of South Africa.  Jordan Spieth, the number one player in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), drops a spot to #3.

American Kevin Kisner and South African Charl Schwartzel complete the Top 5.

Gomez, Snedeker Make Big Moves

The top two finishers in the Sony Open in Hawaii made big jumps in the weekly rankings.  Tournament champion Fabian Gomez of Argentina exploded from 75 to number eight. Tournament runner-up Brandt Snedeker moved up to #11 from #46 last week, after recording a second consecutive top three finish in Honolulu.

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La Quinta, Ca – The PGA Tour returns to the continental United States this week, and it’s time for our Career Builder Challenge picks for both Draft Kings and Yahoo fantasy formats.

A full field of 156 players will make their way to the California Desert that was recently known as the Humana Challenge and more famously known for decades as the Bob Hope Desert Classic, before the PGA Tour went all corporate.

Defending champion Bill Haas is in the field, a field that suffers somewhat by being scheduled opposite the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.  The European Tour event features four of the top six players in the world, including World number one Jordan Spieth and the #3 player in the Official World Golf Ranking, Rory McIlroy.

The La Quinta field does feature one of the hottest players on the planet in 10th ranked Patrick Reed and the defending Open Champion Zach Johnson, currently ranked 11th. Legend Phil Mickelson also makes his 2015-2016 PGA Tour debut on Thursday.

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As the PGA Tour heads back to the mainland, here are our Tuesday Fantasy Golf Notes, January 19, 2016 edition.  A quick look at stories that made headlines in the world of golf on the weekend, and there impact on the rest of the 2015-2016 season.

Gomez becomes a multiple PGA Tour Winner

Argentina’s Fabian Gomez won for a second time on the PGA Tour on Sunday, beating American Brandt Snedeker in a sudden-death playoff to win the Sony Open in Hawaii.

Gomez, who won for the first time last June at the FedEx St. Jude Classic, confirmed a return trip to Kapalua next January for the Hyundai Tournament of Champions.  Right now the field includes the 37-year old and World #1, Jordan Spieth.

The victory also got the late-blooming native of Chaco closer to his goal of being named to the Argentine Olympic team for this summer’s games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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Honolulu, Hawaii – The PGA Tour continues in Hawaii this week, as 156 players tee it up in the Sony Open in Hawaii, the circuit’s first full field event of 2016. Defending champion Jimmy Walker is looking to make a little bit of tour history, as he tries to become the first player, since Steve Sticker in 2009-2011 (John Deere Classic), to win the same PGA Tour event three years in a row.

With many of the tour’s top players skipping this event after competing at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions last weekend, the tournament does not feature a player in the Top 10 of the Official World Golf Ranking, with #11 Adam Scott being the highest ranked challenger to Walker’s three-peat hopes. Still the field features eight of the Top 30 players in the world including Scott, 12th ranked Zach Johnson, #16 Kevin Kisner, #20 Matt Kuchar, #23 Kevin Na, Walker at #25, the 26th ranked player in the world Marc Leishman and #30 Russell Knox.

All of the players mentioned make compelling choices for various reasons and many would have to be considered in form, based on recent results.

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