Filling out your fantasy Masters team? Here’s who you should pick.
Everyone has a method to their madness when it comes to choosing who they think will win the Masters Tournament.
Augusta National Golf Club can be a long-hitter’s paradise, or a haven for the silky, smooth putters. It’s an event where past knowledge can let a former champion turn back the clock, and also allow a surprising figure walk up the 18th fairway on Sunday to an adoring crowd.
Which attribute you lean toward might reflect your own game (or lack thereof). And those preferences tend to leak into our personal selections when it comes to who we think will slip on the green jacket at the end of the week.
With fantasy golf gaming continuing to rise, those choices once made in one’s head are now out there for the world to see.
Maybe you’re drafting for fun with friends, with bragging rights solely on the line. Perhaps there’s a dollar or two, or dinner, at stake.
No matter the outcome, we’ve broken down the most common categories one might think of when picking a Masters champion.
May the odds be ever in your favor.
Power is an asset for any professional. Blasted drives produce shorter approach shots, and scoring well on the par 5s has been a main ingredient in the recipe for Masters champions from Jack Nicklaus to Raymond Floyd, Tiger Woods to Patrick Reed.
Handling the slippery, sloping greens at Augusta National is a key tool in any Masters champion’s arsenal. Not many roll their ball better than this quintet.
Precise iron shots into the proper quadrant of the green are the clear path to solving Augusta National’s wicked putting surfaces. These pros dial in their approach shots at a high rate.
Each of these men understands what is required to slip into the green jacket on Sunday afternoon and, equally important, recent results say they are in good form entering the week.
We’ve grown accustomed to seeing their names on leaderboards around the globe, but none of these players -- four of whom are ranked in the top 20 in the world -- has a major championship trophy on his mantle yet. Is it their time? Thirteen of the last 18 majors went to first-time winners.
Contenders In the Past
They’ve been so close they could taste the next year’s Champions Dinner, only to watch the title slip away on the second nine at Augusta National or in sudden death. Each has the game and desire to join one of golf’s most exclusive clubs.
5 to Avoid
There are nine Masters titles among this group, a recent U.S. Open champion and a talented Aussie who has outplayed strong fields in the U.S. and beyond. Don’t be fooled by their past performance. The current state of their games means they’ll be happy with a tee time on the weekend.