This article is part of our FanDuel PGA series.
The RSM Classic
Course: Sea Island Golf Club
Seaside Course (7,005 yards, par 70) [Host]
Plantation Course (7,060 yards, par 72)
Winner: $1,188,000 and 500 FedExCup points
This will be the first tournament held in the United States since the Houston Open over a month ago. It will also be the last official PGA Tour event of 2019 before restarting in January at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. The story of the golfing world is Brendan Todd. The veteran had missed his first four cuts this season at sat outside the top 500 in the OWGR, then goes on to win both the Bermuda Championship and Maykoba Golf Classic. Todd could join Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlory, Vijay Singh, and Tiger Woods as the only players this century to win in three consecutive PGA Tour starts if he were to win this week in Sea Island. Todd will have to take down a field that includes Presidents Cup participants Matt Kuchar, Webb Simpson, and Adam Hadwin; as well as past champion's Charles Howell and Kevin Kisner. The 156-man field will each get one crack at the newly renovated Plantation Course in the first two rounds before the field is dwindled down to the top-65 and ties on the weekend with play taking place exclusively at the Seaside Course.
Key Stats to Victory
This is not a course that you can overpower. The rough will not be an issue whatsoever, but players will need to avoid strategically placed bunkers off the tees. Like it is most weeks, ball striking will be the first key. The field averaged nearly 11 fairways and just over 13 GIR's per round last year on the Seaside Course. Defending Champion Charles Howell led the field in GIR's last year. The bermudagrass greens at Sea Island are among some of the purest on the PGA Tour, so we should see a lot of putts made this week. The champion has reached at least 19-under-par in three of the last four years, something that should continue with winds this week expected to be very mild.
FanDuel Value Picks
Billy Horschel, ($11,600)
The Florida alum has looked motivated since missing the TOUR Championship in August. Horschel has played in five events since, scoring three top-10 finishes, including a T8 last week in Mayakoba. He has always been a very solid tee-to-green player and has a putter that can get red hot in a hurry. Horschel's last start at Sea Island was a T2 back in 2016.
Charles Howell III, ($11,400)
Last year Howell won in at Sea Island in a playoff to claim victory for the first time on the PGA Tour since 2007. This is among one of his best venues, missing the cut just once in nine tries and posting five top-15's. The former Oklahoma State standout has made 13 of his last 14 cuts overall, with eight top-25's in that span as well.
Harris English, ($11,200)
English is off to as hot a start as anyone this season. Through his first five events, the Georgia product has posted four results of sixth-or-better. That is exactly four more such finishes than he had in his previous 43 PGA Tour starts combined. Ball striking is what was holding English back the last couple seasons, but that is no longer a concern. This season he ranks eighth in SG: Off-the-tee, 13th in SG: Tee-to-green, and eighth in GIR percentage. English is also fifth in SG: Total and seventh in scoring average.
Brian Gay, ($10,000)
In 28 starts a season ago, Gay had six top-25 finishes. Through six starts in the 2019-20 season, the 47-year-old has already collected four top-25's and equaled last season's top-10's with two. Sea Island is a track that suits his game. It is not overly long and you have to putt well. Gay has been inside the top-40 in SG: Putting in each of his last four seasons. That's probably why he has two career top-five's here.
Longer Shots with Value
Adam Long, ($9,500)
Long makes a $1,000 salary jump this week, but there is still plenty of value. He has looked like a completely different player after struggling to find consistency last year. This season he has made all six of his cuts with four top-25 finishes, including a runner-up last week in Mayakoba. Long ranks 18th on Tour in both SG: Approach and SG: Tee-to-green. He also has the eighth-most birdies this season.
Nick Taylor, ($9,000)
The Canadian has made five starts this season and finished inside the top-30 in four of them. He has not been weak in any one area this season, ranking top-55 in SG: Putting, driving accuracy, GIR percentage, SG: Total, and scoring average. Last week in Mayakoba Taylor was T16 in fairways hit and T9 in GIR's en route to a T26 finish.
Robert Streb, ($8,600)
Streb won the RSM Classic in his first appearance back in 2014. Since then he has made three-of-four cuts at Sea Island. This season has been very solid for the 32-year-old. He has made five-of-six cuts, four of which have been finishes inside the top-35. Last week he pulled off a T14 at Mayakoba by hitting the most greens in regulation. That strong ball striking will be important on a course that requires precision such as this.
Mark Hubbard, ($8,500)
Hubbard currently sits 17th in the FedExCup standings thanks to three top-15 finishes this season, including a runner-up at the Houston Open. He has only missed one cut in seven starts this season. All facets of Hubbard's game are clicking, as he ranks 35th in SG: Approach, 31st in SG: Putting, and 24th in SG: Total. He has also piled up the ninth-most birdies this season. Hubbard has made the cut in all three of his starts at Sea Island.
Strategy Tips for this week (based on a 60k standard salary cap)
With around 90 players only getting in two rounds in this week, the name of the game will trying to pick six players that can get you 72 holes. That was a theme in my value picks this week, as the eight players I highlighted have missed a combined three cuts this season. The field this week is mostly top-heavy, as you can make a case for rostering nearly every player with a five-digit salary. I think you start with a player around $10,000 like Brian Gay, Adam Hadwin, Denny McCarthy, or Brian Harman, all of which are excellent putters and solid ball strikers. Then choose two studs above $11,000 followed by three players below $10,000 who have showed consistency this season. It's a complete dice roll if you're choosing from players with a salary under $8,000 this week.