PGA Tour players on the bubble have one last chance to make their case for the playoffs at the 2019 Wyndham Championship, which begins on Thursday from Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C. The top 125 players in the FedEx Cup standings after this week will compete in the playoffs and also get their PGA Tour card for next year, meaning they can enter every event. Webb Simpson, the 2011 winner at Sedgefield, enters as the 11-1 favorite in the latest 2019 Wyndham Championship odds. He also has finished second, third, fifth and sixth in this event, and Simpson even named his daughter Wyndham after winning here eight years ago. Vegas also considers Hideki Matsuyama (12-1), 22-year-old Collin Morikawa (12-1), Paul Casey (16-1), Jordan Spieth (18-1), Viktor Hovland (22-1), Patrick Reed (28-1) and two-time champion Brandt Snedeker (28-1) serious 2019 Wyndham Championship contenders this week. The first 2019 Wyndham Championship tee times are at 7 a.m. ET on Thursday. Before you make any 2019 Wyndham Championship picks or PGA predictions, you’ll want to see what legendary golf expert Sal Johnson has to say.
A media legend and consummate golf insider, Johnson is red-hot this year. He featured Tiger Woods in his best bets for the Masters, and Woods walked away with his fifth green jacket. Then, Johnson promoted Brooks Koepka in his PGA Championship best bets, and Koepka made a mockery of that major, building a seven-shot lead entering the weekend and cruising to victory.
Last month at the Travelers Championship, Johnson promoted 50-1 long shot Chez Reavie as a potential winner, citing Reavie’s momentum following his third-place U.S. Open finish and noting how his game (second in fairway accuracy, eighth in proximity to hole) suited TPC River Highlands perfectly. The result: Reavie cruised to a four-stroke victory, finishing 17-under for his first PGA title in 11 years.
And last week at TPC Southwind, Johnson again promoted Koepka as one of his best bets. The result: Koepka delivered, going 16-under to win the WGC-FedEx Invitational.
Johnson knows what it takes to win at Sedgefield Country Club. Last year, he highlighted Snedeker in his best bets, saying, “His game is coming around and will be perfect for this week.” In 2017, Johnson touted Henrik Stenson as a best bet, noting he had been “getting better every week.” Stenson shot a course-record 22-under to take the Wyndham Championship. Anyone who has followed Johnson’s picks is way, way up.
Now, Johnson — the first producer of “Inside the PGA Tour,” a longtime ABC Sports golf producer and the founder of the world’s biggest golf stats database — has issued his highly confident 2019 Wyndham Championship picks. He made those picks, which he’s sharing at SportsLine, based on his revealing breakdown of the Donald Ross-designed course. It plays at 7,127 yards, shorter than the PGA Tour average.
“Players are afforded the opportunity to use either driver or long iron off the tee,” Johnson told SportsLine. “The most critical component is to manage the slope of the course. To do that, ball control and accuracy are essential.”
“Look for the winner to be someone who doesn’t like to muscle up with his driver and settles for using long irons for control,” he added. “The greens at Sedgefield are very undulating and slope from back to front. Hitting greens will be at a premium.”
We can tell you Johnson wants no part of Spieth, one of the top Vegas favorites at 18-1. In fact, Johnson says Spieth has a better chance of missing the cut than cracking the top three. “He decided to play at the last moment, probably because he needs to gain more FedEx Cup points since he’s 67th in the standings,” Johnson told SportsLine. “He was second in this event in 2013, but Sedgefield is not his friend. He will be solid on the greens, but the rest of his game is not a good match for this course. He ranks 183rd in strokes gained off the tee, 189th in greens in regulation and 83rd in scrambling.”
Johnson also has a strong read on Simpson, who finished second at last week’s WGC-FedEx Invitational. Simpson is 117-under par in 36 all-time rounds at Sedgefield, a 66.75 average. Simpson has won five PGA Tour events, but four of those wins came between 2011 and 2013.
Johnson also has locked in the fate of Paul Casey, the 42-year-old Brit who’s the fourth-biggest favorite at 16-1. “Casey tied for third the last time he played Sedgefield in 2015, so the big question is why it took him so long to return,” Johnson told SportsLine. “His game hasn’t been bad this summer, either. He tied for fifth at the Travelers and played well last weekend in Memphis. He ranks seventh in strokes gained tee to green, hitting plenty of fairways and greens, but he needs to putt better. He’s 201st in putting from four to eight feet and 194th on putts inside 10 feet.”
Strikingly, Johnson is high on a colossal long shot who’s “straight off the tee and hits plenty of of greens.” Johnson has seen this overlooked player improve dramatically as a putter, producing impressive finishes week after week. Anyone who backs this underdog could hit it big.
Who wins the 2019 Wyndham Championship? And which massive long shot stuns the golf world? Check out the latest 2019 Wyndham Championship odds below, then visit SportsLine to see Sal Johnson’s full 2019 Wyndham Championship leaderboard and picks, all from the consummate golf insider who has nailed this event the past two years.
Webb Simpson 11-1
Hideki Matsuyama 12-1
Collin Morikawa 12-1
Paul Casey 16-1
Jordan Spieth 18-1
Viktor Hovland 22-1
Patrick Reed 28-1
Brandt Snedeker 28-1
Lucas Glover 33-1
Billy Horschel 33-1
Adam Hadwin 40-1
Charles Howell III 40-1
Martin Kaymer 40-1
Martin Laird 40-1
Chez Reavie 45-1
Byeong Hun An 50-1
Joaquin Niemann 50-1
Scott Piercy 50-1
Rory Sabbatini 50-1
Cameron Smith 50-1
Matthew Wolff 50-1