By Landon Smith

2021 Waste Management Phoenix Open Top 8 Power Rankings PGA Golf Odds, Prediction

Waste Management Phoenix Open from Scottsdale, Arizona Top 8 Power Rankings at TPC Scottsdale
2021 Waste Management Phoenix Open

Date: Feb 4-7, 2021

Course: TPC Scottsdale

Location: Scottsdale, Arizona

Purse: $ 7,300,000

Field: 132

Yardage: 7,364

Par: 71

TV: Golf Channel / ESPN+

 

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Preview

Typically, TPC Scottsdale hosts more than 100,000 of its closest friends for the Waste Management Phoenix Open and its famous par 3 at the 16th hole.

There will still be fans, unlike almost every PGA Tour event since the pandemic began, but it will be limited to 5,000 per day.

Five of the top 10 in the official world golf rankings are in Arizona this week, along with 12 of the top 25.

It's a standard desert layout where the field is a collection of juxtaposed green grass patches alongside brown sand and artificial water hazards.

The weather forecast for the week looks quite dry with light winds and temperatures in the 40s and 60s. This could lead to firm conditions if the PGA Tour wanted it, but this event tends to be dart golf, less on approach.

Here are 8 players who won't waste their time at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

1. Jon Rahm +650

The fiery Spaniard would like to have some return shots this weekend, but he was stellar once again at Torrey Pines en route to the T-7th (69-67-72-72).

Rahm now stands near his former homeland in Arizona. The former Sun Devil never won the Phoenix Open, but it certainly fattened his wallet there.

He made his debut at TPC Scottsdale as a fan in 2015 in an incredible way. Scores of 70-68-66-68 gave him a T-5th, which stands as his best result in the tournament.

His next finals were not far behind: T-16 (70-69-65-70) in 2017, T-11 ° (67-68-65-72) in 2018, T-10 (67-68- 70-69) in 2019 and T-9th (67-68-68-70) last year.

This is a course where he can demolish par 5s and have eagle opportunities every day at 17. The lack of rough allows Rahm to take more risks off the tee.

Rahm put a new Odyssey 2-Ball Prototype putter into play last week. Shotlink data was only recorded on the South Course last week. Rahm was 40th on the field in strokes won on the putt (.261).

Perhaps the move to a more predictable surface from poa annua to Bermuda, as well as another week to get started with the new flatstick, will see more putts fall.

Interestingly, he also finished 2020 with a T-7 at the Masters. The 26-year-old has finished in the top 25 in 10 consecutive events.

2. Justin Thomas +850

Justin Thomas won bronze each of the last two times at the Phoenix Open. He debuted at TPC Scottsdale in 2015 with T-17th, missed a couple of cuts and then returned to where he started at T-17th again in 2018.

He had plenty of chances down the stretch by taking third place solo in 2019 (64-66-68-72), finishing three shots back. Shooting 270 once again put him in a tie for third place in 2020 (68-68-69-65) and again just three shots back.

JT arrives in Arizona after a week off after missing the cut at the European Tour event in Abu Dhabi. It was his first event related to the aftermath of his homophobic insult uttered during the Tournament of Champions and the subsequent loss of one of his main sponsors, Ralph Lauren.

It will be interesting to see how Thomas atones for his mistake in the future and how it affects his game. While he hasn't won since last summer's WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational, he was still in a good position.

3. Xander Schauffele +1000

Three starts and three top-20s for Xander Schauffele at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. It is emblematic of the high-end consistency Schauffele displays throughout the year.
The Californian comes to the Phoenix Open with a streak of 14 consecutive top 25s.

More relevant to this week is the fact that X Man's kicked off their 2021 by finishing fifth at the Tournament of Champions and second last week at the Farmers Insurance Open.

The 27-year-old tied for the lowest score on the South Course. He ranked in the top 10 on the field in approach wins (1.17) and SG putt (1.26).

He is now at TPC Scottsdale, where he was ranked 17th (68-67-66-72) in 2018, 10th (67-72-67-68) in 2019 and 16th (67-67-66-74). ). in 2020. A strong Sunday round could have had him in the mix in 2017 and 2020.

The former San Diego State Aztec ranks in the top 36 in all categories won in strokes for the season. There is no type of field, type of grass or caliber of player that he cannot beat. It is about closing strong on Sunday, because it is almost certain that he will be in the lead.

This is a good event for him to try to get over the hump and get his fifth win on the PGA Tour.

4. Rory McIlroy +1000

The Northern Irishman has been a full-time professional for over a decade and has spread across the world in competition. He usually plays in the Middle East desert at this time of year on the Euro Tour.

McIlroy's recently opted to play more on a US-based schedule, as he continues to live in Florida, now with a baby in tow. McIlroy is in the southwestern desert for the first time in 2021. All signs point to him competing immediately at TPC Scottsdale.

For starters, he thrives on desert designs. McIlroy's won three times in Dubai and has a lot of good results in Abu Dhabi. If he bothered to play The American Express in Palm Springs, I'm sure he would dominate there too.

TPC Scottsdale is a place that he can let it break if he wants to, or if the swing isn't marked, he can hit a conductive iron or fairway wood. It will feel like a relief compared to the usual brutal Torrey Pines ordeal.

Historically, the Northern Irishman hasn't played a ton of west coast swing golf, particularly on poa annua greens. Moving to Bermuda should be a boost for someone who has gained a lot on that acreage in Florida and beyond.

The 31-year-old is on a streak of eight consecutive top-21 finishes. A remarkable stretch for most pros, but disappointing for the four-time Major champion who doesn't have a win in the span.

5. Webb Simpson +1400

North Carolinian have been out of the game for the last two weeks so they should be fresh to defend their title. Simpson played well in Hawaii. He finished T-17 at the Tournament of Champions and T-4 at the Sony Open.

This will be the Wake Forest student's 11th Phoenix Open opening. He only missed the cut twice and finished in the top 14 in five consecutive starts from 2011-2017.

The 35-year-old has all the shots on the greens and the stats back it up. Simpson is ranked 26th on the PGA Tour in shots won around the green (.364). He is also 16th in putting for SG (.822).

Not to mention, he's hitting 73.21% of his fairways to sit second on the Tour. The rather cold conditions this week shouldn't bother you too much. He looks for him to compete for a repeat victory in the desert.

6. Hideki Matsuyama +2200

Japan's best golfer has always owned TPC Scottsdale, particularly since 2014.

This event is only 132 players, but this is not a limited / no-cut field event that we are talking about here.

Matsuyama came just one shot away from equaling Bubba in 2015, then beat eventual Phoenix Open champions in the playoffs against Rickie Fowler in 2016 and Webb Simpson in 2017.

Matsuyama shot 2 under 69 to sit in the T-44 after the first round in 2018 before retiring with a wrist injury. That plagued him at times throughout the year and he still hasn't won worldwide since 2017.

Meanwhile, Matsuyama has still played world-class golf. That includes T-15th (68-69-69-69) at TPC Scottsdale in 2019.

The worst result of six of him was last year when the poor guy settled for T-16 (67-74-65-68).

Unfortunately, the course history is not the total equation. Matsuyama tied for last place in the Tournament of Champions to open in 2021. He rallied for T-19 at the Sony Open and made another cut last week at the Farmers Insurance Open (T-53rd).

7. Sungjae Im +2800

Sungjae Im opened the year with T-5th at the Tournament of Champions, where he posted four rounds in the 60s. There was a cut in each of the next three events and I played the weekend each time.

That includes another high finish at The American Express (T-12) and a couple of good rounds en route to the T-32 at the Farmers Insurance Open. Im had a good ball hitting season, but his short game and putter have lagged behind. It was nice to see Sungjae put the flat stick in gear last week, as three rounds at Torrey Pines' South Course resulted in .92 SG per round, good for 27th place.

If he can take advantage of that this week in Bermuda, his ball strokes should improve from last week in a more forgiving layout.

His only victory on the PGA Tour came in Bermuda at the 2020 Honda Classic.

8. Ryan Palmer +4000

Past success at the Phoenix Open compared to recent success on the PGA Tour makes Ryan Palmer an attractive option this week.

The 44-year-old Texan has made 15 starts at the Phoenix Open. He came close to clinching the trophy, finishing T-2nd (68-66-64-72) in 2006, fifth (64-73-66-62) in 2013 and T-2nd (64-72-68-66) in 2015.

Palmer is quite a fun guy and relates well to the hundreds of thousands of fans who regularly attend this event. He believes that he will still be successful at a Phoenix Open with less attendance.

The T-2nd arrived last week at the Farmers Insurance Open. He and the field were within five strokes of champion Patrick Reed, but it was still an impressive performance and something to look out for when looking for U.S. sleepers. Open for Torrey Pines in June.

Palmer was second on the field in putts earned (2.6) in all three rounds measured at the South Course. He shot 66 and kicked well in the North as well.

Odds to Win

Phoenix Open | Winner

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By Landon Smith, on 4 Feb 2021, at 7:41p ET