This week, the PGA Tour’s best head south down I-95 towards our nation’s capital. For the second straight year the Tour returns to TPC Avenel Farm for the Quicken Loans National. After last year’s triumphant return, it’s expected we’ll see plenty of action this week near the banks of the Potomac.
Like the Travelers last week, the Quicken Loans National boasts a spectacular field — including the tournament host, Tiger Woods.
Last year, the buzz was that the return to the renovated TPC Potomac Avenel Farm was that it would provide a stern test of golf — and it did! This year’s tilt should prove to be much of the same.
With that in mind, there will be a premium on ball-striking and confidence. This week’s picks include a number of players who sport the latter and have proven themselves to be among the best at the former.
So — who will have what it takes to tackle TPC Potomac Avenel Farms and celebrate a win at Tiger’s tourney — and who will be looking to return their rental car a couple days early.
Here’s a look at who will rise — and who will fall at the Quicken Loans National.
Tiger Woods — From the “why the hell not files,” comes this pick. After a big splash to begin with his runner-up at the Valspar just a couple starts into his comeback, Tiger Woods has slowed a bit. I mean, relatively speaking. To be honest, he’s still been showing some flashes of brilliance but just hasn’t broken through. This week, in the tournament he hosts, would be the perfect time for Tiger to get his first win on the comeback trail.
Beau Hossler — One of the quite but deadly fantasy players this year has been Beau Hossler. This week, he comes in riding a streak of ten cuts made. During that stretch, he’s also notched two runner-up finishes during that time. Is this the week Hossler finally gets it done? Perhaps — but what seems to be a sure thing as that he’ll provide some fantasy fire power this week at Quicken Loans National.
Joaquin Niemann — How has this guy not won yet? You want to talk about ups and downs, then you want to talk about 19-year-old Joaquin Niemann. The PGA Tour rookie has made six starts and missed the cut in three of them. The three cuts he made, however, he ended up collecting a top-1o finish. I’m going to bet the trend continues and that Niemann will experience quite the week at TPC Potomac Avenel Farm.
Rickie Fowler — Rickie Fowler hasn’t found his way to the winner’s circle just yet but that could all change this week. And if he doesn’t, he should still end up anchoring fantasy lineups every where. Fowler has played some solid golf, collecting eight top-20’s in 14 starts. Last year, Fowler finished T-3 here. His recent form and solid — albeit, limited — track record here makes him an interesting play.
Gary Woodland — Already a winner in 2018, Gary Woodland was one of the great stories of the early part of the year. Now, he’s mired in a bit of a slump and while the big bomber is still a fan favorite, he’s not anywhere near the top of my fantasy list. Woodland is bound to right the ship, but I don’t think that happens this week. You’d be foolish to waste a start on him while he’s struggling the way he is right now.
Kyle Stanley — Generally speaking, I’m a big fan of horses for courses — but this week I’m passing on Kyle Stanley. A lot of people are looking for Stanley — last year’s winner here — to go back-to-back. He’s played some good golf lately but has been, generally speaking, inconsistent. I don’t trust him this week and neither should you.
Stewart Cink — You see it every week: a guy has a surprisingly great tournament and everyone loses their minds the next week and puts that guy on their fantasy roster. When that happens, fantasy teams get demolished. This week, that guy is Stewart Cink. Last week, Cink posted rounds of 68-68-68 and 62 to sneak into a tie for second place at the Travelers. Please — do NOT expect that again this week.