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PGA TOUR Expert Picks for the BMW Championship 08-15-2019

The second of three events in the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup kicks off this week at the BMW Championship. The BMW Championship makes it first appearance at Medinah Country Club in the greater Chicago metropolitan area this week. Last year, Keegan Bradley won in a playoff over Justin Rose in this event at Aronimink Golf Club. Bradley sits at 66th in the FedExCup rankings this week and likely needs a solo 3rd place or better to jump into the top 30 and advance to the TOUR Championship. Unlike the first round of the PGA TOUR Playoffs, there will be no cut this week, so the entire field will play all four days. For more information on where each player needs to finish this week to advance to the final round of the PGA TOUR Playoffs, click here.

The PGA TOUR makes its return to historic Medinah for the first time since it hosted the Ryder Cup in 2012. Medinah has hosted 5 major championships: 3 US Opens (1949, 1975 and 1990) and 2 PGA Championships (1999 and 2006). Older golf fans will remember Tiger Woods holding off a leaping Sergio Garcia to take the 1999 PGA Championship before he dominated the 2006 PGA to win by 5 strokes. 13 of the 24 players from the 2012 Ryder Cup, where the Europeans shocked the world in "The Miracle at Medinah" by rallying from a 4-point deficit on the last day to win, will be in the field this week. Subscribe to Cover The Spread 365 now to see who will win at Medinah in the BMW Championship!

Key Metrics: Medinah Country Club

The No. 3 course at Medinah CC will play as a par 72 at over 7,600 yards with bentgrass greens rolling around a 12 on the stimpmeter (depending on rain). The par 3s will play long this week with the shortest one playing 192 yards. Three of the four par 3s are played over water, so missing greens in regulation will be costly. Aside from the drivable 15th hole, the rest of the par 4s at Medinah average 456.8 yards. With tree lined fairways and Kentucky Blue Grass rough surrounding the short grass, players who can gain strokes off the tee will have a big advantage, especially on the four par 5s (which will all be reachable in two). Here are the key metrics to look at when making your picks this week:

Strokes Gained (SG) Off the Tee

SG Approach

Proximity from 175 - 200 yards

Proximity from >200 yards

SG Around the Green

Scrambling from the Rough

Par 5 Scoring Average

All odds courtesy of Bovada.

Winning Picks

Adam Scott

Scott has two top 2 finishes this season but is still looking for his first win of the year. Could he get his first win the week after Patrick Reed, another former Masters winner, captured his own first victory of the season in the first round of the playoffs? Absolutely. He has 3 top 7 finishes in his last 5 starts, and his statistical profile fits Medinah well. He finished T3 at Medinah in the 2006 PGA Championship, and at +2500 he presents this week's best value pick to win the BMW.

FedExCup Rank: 14

Odds to Win: +2500

Key Metrics:

29th in SG Off the Tee

4th in SG Tee to Green and 3rd SG Total

4th in SG Approach

55th on approaches 175-200 yards

37th on approaches > 200 yards

6th in SG Around the Green

13th in scrambling from the rough

3rd in Par 5 scoring average

Brooks Koepka

Koepka wasn’t on top of his game last week but still managed to make the cut and finish T30 at The Northern Trust. His two previous starts resulted in a top 5 at The Open Championship and a Win at the WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational. He finished 5th in SG Off the Tee last week at Liberty National, and that will give him a bigger advantage at Medinah. We know Koepka doesn’t practice outside of the majors, so last week may have served as his tune-up for the rest of the playoffs and a solid performance this week.

He's not as great a value as Scott at +2500, but Koepka playing in the second week of back-to-back tournaments is huge for him. Both of his wins this year came on the second week of back-to-back starts. Nearly every single time he plays in the second tournament in back-to-back weeks he improves. The last 2 times that Koepka took a week off then played in back-to-back events, he finished solo 2nd at the U.S. Open and 1st at the WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational. You can take Brooks to the bank this week.

FedExCup Rank: 1

Odds to Win: +800

Key Metrics:

16th in SG Off the Tee

9th in SG Tee to Green

13th in SG Approach

4th on approaches 175-200 yards

14th on approaches > 200 yards

90th in SG Around the Green

39th in scrambling from the rough

18rd in Par 5 scoring average

Rory McIlroy

McIlroy's key metrics might be the best in the field this week. Coming off the heels of a T6 at The Northern Trust, McIlroy has now finished in the top 10 in 6 of his last 8 tournaments, including a win at the RBC Canadian Open. If he can improve on last week's lower-than-usual 46th in SG Approach (and we think he will because Medinah's layout will reward his length off the tee more), McIlroy should find himself at the top of the leaderboard Sunday night.

FedExCup Rank: 3

Odds to Win: +800

Key Metrics:

1st in SG Off the Tee

11th in SG Approach

20th in SG Around the Green

5th in Par 5 scoring average

Picks to Contend

Louis Oosthuizen

Oosthuizen has the worst metrics of anyone on this list, but he is rolling in hot after a T6 at Liberty National last week. He finished 1st in Scrambling, 3rd in GIR and 7th in Proximity to the hole last week and now has recorded 3 consecutive top 20 finishes. He'll be in the hunt at Medinah this week.

FedExCup Rank: 26

Odds to Win: +3300

Key Metrics:

86th in SG Off the Tee

33rd in SG Tee to Green, 34th in SG Total

69th in SG Approach

42nd on approaches 175-200 yards

21st on approaches > 200 yards

4th in SG Around the Green

1st in scrambling from the rough

148th in Par 5 scoring average

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