/2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf rankings, picks: Back Dustin Johnson, fade Webb Simpson at TPC Sawgrass
2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf rankings, picks: Back Dustin Johnson, fade Webb Simpson at TPC Sawgrass

2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf rankings, picks: Back Dustin Johnson, fade Webb Simpson at TPC Sawgrass

Rory McIlroy won the last full event played at TPC Sawgrass, and he is hoping the 2021 Players Championship can spur him to another season like the one he had in 2019. The Northern Irishman is technically the defending champion after the 2020 event’s unprecedented cancellation due to the pandemic. He went on to win four events that year but has not won another since the calendar flipped to 2020. William Hill Sportsbook’s latest 2021 Players Championship odds list Dustin Johnson as the 12-1 favorite from a loaded 2021 Players Championship field that will tee off Thursday in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. Bryson DeChambeau is the 14-1 second favorite, while McIlroy and Jon Rahm are 16-1.

So is it time for McIlroy to break out, and does he deserve a spot on top of your 2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf rankings? Or would you be better off with a mix of players like Xander Shauffele (20-1) and Jordan Spieth (25-1)? Before making any 2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf picks, check out the latest Fantasy golf rankings from data scientist Rick Gehman.

With his expansive database of golf statistics, course data and betting odds, Gehman creates advanced models and back-tests them constantly. These models have produced 12 outright winners in the past year — including 30-1 Webb Simpson at the 2020 RBC Heritage, 50-1 Chez Reavie at last year’s Travelers and 40-1 Patrick Reed at the Northern Trust among the PGA Tour winners — plus a $10,000 DraftKings win at The Masters.

At last week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational, five of Gehman’s top 10 picks finished T-10 or better, including DeChambeau. The tour’s biggest hitter was one of just three players to break par in the final round to become the first player to win twice on tour this season.

The golf expert also expected Jordan Spieth to continue his progress despite it being his first appearance at Bay Hill, and the three-time major champion was in contention all week before finishing fourth.

Gehman has been on fire all season. At Pebble Beach, three of his top four picks finished in the top five and the Farmers leaderboard looked like a who’s who of Gehman’s rankings, with five of his top nine picks finishing tied for seventh or better. And at the Sony, the top three in his rankings all finished in the top seven. Anyone who has followed his advice has cashed in huge.

Now, Gehman, co-host of “The First Cut” podcast on CBS Sports, has revealed his top 30 players for the Players Championship 2021 over at SportsLine so you can crush your Fantasy golf picks.

2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf picks

Johnson hit a speed bump at the WGC-Workday, but Gehman isn’t deterred and still backs him this week. The world’s top-ranked player since August, Johnson tied for 54th at The Concession and shot 78 in his last round, but he will be recharged and focused as he starts his run at what he hopes will be a Masters repeat. He is No. 1 in scoring on tour and remains one of its best from tee to green, so Gehman is on board.

The golf expert isn’t quite as sure about Webb Simpson and is fading him. The veteran is one of the best ball-strikers on tour, but he hasn’t been playing a lot of golf, logging just four events in the calendar year. He tied for sixth at the Workday but finished outside the top 25 in two of his previous four outings. Simpson’s lack of length off the tee puts a lot of pressure on his game, and he has been up and down recently, so Gehman will steer clear.

How to set your 2021 Players Championship Fantasy golf lineups

Notably, Gehman is looking for another step forward from a player making his first appearance at Sawgrass who comes in with odds higher than 50-1. This young golfer’s game doesn’t have any major flaws, and he always hangs around on the leaderboard. He has the skill to win, and Gehman believes this could be the week he breaks through. Gehman is only sharing who it is, and his top 30 golfers in order, right here.

Who wins the Players Championship 2021? Who are the top golfers to target? And which overlooked player can help you win your league this week? Visit SportsLine now to get Rick Gehman’s Fantasy golf rankings for the 2021 Players Championship, all from the data scientist who’s called 12 outright winners in the past year.