Major assassin Brooks Koepka heads a star-studded field at Royal Portrush
The 2019 British Open runs July 17-July 21 at Royal Portrush Golf Club in Portrush, Northern Ireland. That means it's time to pick your optimal DraftKings fantasy golf lineup. Fortunately, our fantasy golf experts are ready to help.
Here's what our best 2019 British Open lineup looks like in this week's predictions:
Brooks Koepka ($11,400)
As you would expect from a major championship, it's an embarrassment of riches at the top of the board. Do we go with 2014 Open Champion Rory McIlroy, who has an active streak of five straight top-8 finishes at the Open and holds the Royal Portrush course record? Or flavor-of-the-month Jon Rahm, who won the Irish Open a couple weeks ago on the strength of a final-round 62? Or rested-and-ready Tiger Woods, a three-time Open Champion whose low stinger is perfect for windy Open conditions? How about none of the above? Let us repeat: It's a major, which means it's Koepka time. BK is pursuing an unprecedented top-2 major slam after a T2 at The Masters, a win at the PGA and a solo second at the U.S. Open. His looper, Ricky Elliott, is a native of Portrush; local knowledge never hurts. And for those who dismiss this event as Koepka's weakest major, he does have two top 10s in his last three Open starts. Don't overthink this — BK's a money play.
Matt Kuchar ($8,700)
In the midst of a career year, Kooch has overtaken Rickie Fowler as current consensus Best Player Never to Win a Major. At 41, it may seem like he's running out of chances, but he's collecting major top 20s like baseball cards and is likely to win one eventually. He's gone T12, T8, T16 in this year's first three majors, and the British, surprisingly, may be his best bet of all. His lone career runner-up at a major came at the 2017 Open, and he followed that with a T9 last year. To top it off, he looks like a value at this price. They're not booing (at least, not anymore, now that earlier controversies have died down); they're yelling Kooooch.
Paul Casey ($8,300)
Casey gives off a similar vibe to last year's breakthrough winner Francesco Molinari — he's crafting a solid career that's ready to move to a new level. Casey's having his best year stateside, with a win and six top 5s on the strength of impeccable ball striking (7th in SG: Off-the-Tee and 7th in SG: Tee-to-Green). He won the 2012 Irish Open, so he has fond feelings for the Emerald Isle. His renewed emphasis on the U.S. Tour could yield a FedExCup this year, but first things first.
Webb Simpson ($7,600)
Webb is quietly weaving an impressive major resume — he has six top-20 finishes in his last seven majors, including a T5 at this year's Masters. He's shown no real weaknesses this year — he ranks 9th in SG: Total and 4th in Scoring Average. Since his 2018 Players Championship win, he's missed two cuts in 29 tournaments. Plus, it's rare that the world's 19th-ranked player can be had at this price.
Bernd Wiesberger ($7,100)
Wiesberger beat a star-studded field at the Scottish Open — Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler were among those on hand at the Open tune-up in North Berwick, Scotland. It was Wiesberger's second win in his last six starts and moved him to 40th in the World Ranking (from a recent low of 389) and to No. 1 in the Euro Tour's Race to Dubai standings. It's a given that a relative unknown (in the U.S., anyway) will pop to the first page of the Open leaderboard. Why not the hot hand?
Charley Hoffman ($6,700)
Sure, his recent form's been pretty abysmal, but the Hoff majors in out-of-nowhere rounds where everything clicks. He has back-to-back top 20s at the Open, and his ball striking has actually been pretty decent (34th in SG: Approach-the-Green), a useful trait at a track that values the art.