Farmers Insurance Open Preview and Picks
The first big tournament of 2016 on North American soil takes this place week from the famed Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California – an event that had previously been owned by Tiger Woods who has won here seven times.
2016 Farmers Insurance Open
When: January 28 – 31, 2016
Location: Torrey Pines (South Course) – La Jolla, California
Purse: $6,100,000 (Winner Share – $1,098,000)
Defending Champion: Jason Day
Updated Sportsbook Bonuses For Today
A good field including five of the top 10 players in the world will tee it up on Torrey Pines 7,698 yard layout – the longest in a non-major.
It ranked as the second-hardest par 72 last season with a scoring average of 73.51. Fairways and greens are notoriously tough to hit at Torrey Pines – a good all around game that features length, accuracy and creativity is essential here. That’s why Jason Day is the favorite.
So who other than Day should we keep our eyes on this week?
Let’s take a look.
2016 Farmers Insurance Open Favorites:
Jason Day 7/1
Defending champion in this event also had a runner-up finish here in 2014 and a T9 in 2013. He makes his first start since knocking off the rust and finishing T10 at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. His game is perfectly suited for this track and his form is almost second-to-none. With Jordan Spieth sitting this one out, Day is the easy favorite this week.
Rickie Fowler 8/1
Arrives on a high after his win in Abu Dhabi – his second straight top 5 finish worldwide. He hasn’t had all that much success at Torrey Pines the last couple of years but he did register four straight top-20 finishes from 2010-2013. Fowler was sizzling last week and if the Abu Dhabi hangover isn’t intense, I think Fowler contends this week again.
Dustin Johnson 14/1
DJ should be able to rip this track up by he hasn’t so far in his career – just two top 35s in his seven appearances and a T3 in 2011. He has played once this season finishing T10 at Kapalua. Track history isn’t on Johnson’s side and his current form is just OK. Translation – I’m staying away.
Brandt Snedeker 14/1
Won this event in 2012 and enters this week in very good form. He finished T3 in Maui and lost in a playoff at the Sony Open already this year. His track history here is also very good – Sneds has four top 3 finishes in this event – a third-place finish in 2007, T2 finishes in both 2010 and 2013 and a playoff win in 2012. Track history and current form have me looking long and hard at Snedeker this week – he seems due!
2016 Farmers Insurance Open Contenders:
Patrick Reed 20/1
I picked Reed to win last week – he let me down finishing T56 at La Quinta. He hasn’t played this event since a T39 in 2013 but his game and current form (outside of last week) has him firmly on the radar – he did have six straight top 10s before last week. Reed looks for a bounce back this week and should be motivated as ever to get an overdue win.
Phil Mickelson 20/1
Three time champion here arrives on the heels of a T3 at the CareerBuilder Challenge. That’s where the optimism stops – Phil has failed to crack the top 50 in his last four appearances at Torrey Pines.
Jimmy Walker 20/1
Posted a T10 finish at Hyundai with a T13 finish at Sony in Hawaii to prove that he is back to form. He has finished inside the top 10 in three of his last four appearances at this event – his ability to hit it long and straight should help him out again this week. Walker seems to always do something special in January – this is his last chance in 2016!
Bill Haas 25/1
Has four top 20 finishes here, three top 10s while making 10 of 11 cuts – needless to say Torrey Pines fits Haas’s eye. He enters off a T9 at his favorite event in La Quinta. Torrey Pines always brings the best out in Haas – don’t be surprised to see his name again this week.
Charles Howell III 40/1
Has made the cut all 13 times he’s played here and enters this year in good form – five straight finishes of T-17 or better in the wrap-around season. He had runner-up finishes in both 2005 and 2007 and has finished inside the top 10 here three times in the last five editions including a T5 last year. Current form and track history are hard to ignore with Howell this week.
2016 Farmers Insurance Open Sleepers (50/1 or higher):
Shane Lowry 50/1
Irishman hasn’t played in the US since the PGA Championship – he picks and chooses his spots. He was T7 in this event last year and also displayed his class with a win at the 2015 WGC-Bridgestone in August. He had a win in the EURASIA CUP a few weeks back and arrives full of confidence this week.
Marc Leishman 50/1
Has finished in a tie for second on two occasions here – he obviously loves this track. He did post a win in South Africa in December and looks due for a win on a course he’s come close in the past.
Jamie Lovemark 50/1
Shot in the dark time! Lovemark has finished inside the top 10 in his last three starts and has the game to make another run this week. His length off the tee will be an asset and his record here is OK – 4-for-5 at Torrey Pines.
Lovemark has been playing some nice golf and could sneak up on everyone this week.
2016 Farmers Insurance Open Picks:
I’m lovin’ Brandt Snedeker at 14/1 this week. It was tempting to go with Jason Day but Sneds is just too hot right now – two top 3 finishes in Hawaii this year. With a win and two other top 3s in this event, I think Sneds rides his solid all around game and hot putter to the victory.
The sleeper is Jamie Lovemark at 50/1. Just call it a hunch.
Check back each week for your PGA golf gambling, handicapping info & free golf picks.