4 Potential Longshots & PGA TOUR Sleepers For The 2024 CJ Cup Byron Nelson

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Written By John Haslbauer | Last Updated
golf dfs picks

The PGA TOUR returns to Texas with TPC Craig Ranch next on tap to host the CJ Cup Byron Nelson for the fourth time since replacing Trinity Forest in 2021. Last week’s PGA TOUR golf sleepers and golf DFS picks article successfully identified Charley Hoffman & Nick Watney as top-20 candidates at the Zurich Classic, and we’ll look to keep that momentum going into McKinney, Texas.

KH Lee paved the way for longshot hopes at this event in its first two years at TPC Craig Ranch. While Jason Day may have disrupted that trend last year, it’s clear this in the type of birdie fest set up that lends itself to longshot contenders. We’ll look to dig for some diamonds in the rough in this article ahead of the 2024 CJ Cup Byron Nelson.

Let’s get to our 2024 CJ Cup Byron Nelson longshots and sleepers for your DFS lineups and betting cards. Click on the golf odds listed below to bet now on the best available prices in your state. 

CJ CUP BYRON NELSON Odds

CJ CUP BYRON NELSON INTRODUCTION

TPC Craig Ranch is not the most remarkable venue on the PGA TOUR, lacking a unique identity, memorable holes, or noteworthy finishes over its first three years hosting the PGA TOUR. With that said, we know that this type of course — with its length, forgiving fairways, and straightforward green-side complexes — likely boils down to a birdie-fest and provides a slight advantage for those with above-average driving distance.

New last year, TPC Craig Ranch converted one of its short par 5s into a long par 4. With that change, it will now play to a 7,414-yard par 71. In the grand scheme of things, the change is minor. The course will continue to favor the best players on approaches from beyond 200 yards. Score relative to par may be down as a result compared to the first two years as host, but this is still a layout that will reward aggressive birdie makers, similar to what we would typically see throughout the Fall Swing.

For a deeper dive into the course, read my CJ Cup Byron Nelson preview. Let’s get to our 2024 CJ Cup Byron Nelson picks, with a focus on longshots and PGA TOUR golf sleepers for your DFS lineups.

FINDING VALUE IN GOLF DFS PICKS: CJ CUP BYRON NELSON

To identify “value” any given week on the PGA TOUR, I find it’s best first to understand the consensus key stat profile. Then, take a stance on the elements of the tournament that may go overlooked. At the CJ Cup Byron Nelson, Recent Form, Course History, and Birdies or Better Gained in easy scoring conditions are consensus key areas factored into each player’s price.

From a sleeper perspective, I will take a stance on the importance of Comp Course History at similar long, second-shot, wind-exposed courses, Proximity 200+, and Driving Distance as areas to identify buy-low value to differentiate my player pool.

Jake Knapp (, $8,000)

From a DFS perspective, I tend not to spend much time in this Sleepers article on any players in the $8K range on DraftKings, as it already goes without saying that a golfer this high up the board is expected to play well. In the case of Jake Knapp at the CJ Cup Byron Nelson, this appears to be a severe miss-price, as he can be found at the same outright betting odds (100-1) as a player like Robert MacIntyre ($7,100 on DraftKings). At this over-price, we should expect Knapp to come in severely under-owned on DraftKings, which makes him a very appealing Sleeper play.

A winner seven starts ago at the Mexico Open, I’m drawn back to Jake Knapp this week for all the same reasons that led me to him at Vidanta Vallarta. One of the longest hitters on TOUR with elite long iron approach play, Knapp is at his best on open courses that put a premium on driving distance and spike putting. He’s already picked up three top-5 finishes early into his rookie season on courses that share that same description, and remains in solid ball-striking form leading into this week.

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Sami Valimaki (, $7,000)

The runner up to Jake Knapp at the Mexico Open was none other than Sami Valimaki, who also showed great poise in contention for the first time in his rookie season. Like Knapp, Valimaki’s quick ascent on the PGA TOUR was not a shock to see, considering his previous international success. The Finn has won twice on the DP World Tour since 2020, most recently winning the Qatar Masters this past October.

Profiling as a bomber with spike putting upside, Valimaki has consistently gained off-the-tee and putting to start his PGA TOUR rookie season, and has put himself in contention whenever able to gain on approach. With it’s sheer length, exposure to gusting winds, emphasis on long-iron approach play, and comparable easy scoring conditions, Vidanta Vallarta is one of the strongest comps I can think of to TPC Craig Ranch. We have not seen many easy scoring venues since March either, so I’m willing to buy low on Valimaki in this spot as he steps into a much stronger course fit for his game.

Vincent Norrman (, $7,000)

Another Scandinavian bomber who has exclusively found success on wide open, easy scoring venues, there isn’t much about TPC Craig Ranch’s layout that should cause Norrman problems. Prior to picking up his first two career professional wins last season, Norrman displayed his fit for this course in his 2023 debut with a T8 finish.

A slump on the greens has kept him from contending more regularly this season, however the 2023 Barbasol Championship winner should find a return to easy scoring conditions as a welcomed sight. Norrman ranks No. 5 amongst this field in Driving Distance and has shown some steady improvement recently with three consecutive made cuts leading in.

Hayden Springer (, $6,700)

You may be noticing a trend by now, as I’m clearly much higher on the importance of Driving Distance and performance on comparable long, windy, and easy scoring venues than the market is. Another member of the 2024 PGA TOUR rookie class, Springer carries a great resume with him, winning twice on the Canadian Tour last fall.

That momentum continued into the PGA TOUR this season, when Springer finished one stroke shy of a playoff at the 2024 Puerto Rico Open. Grand Reserve, host of the Puerto Rico Open, is the best comp course I can think of to simulate the conditions TPC Craig Ranch offers, making Springer a great buy-low candidate at this price. A top-40 finisher at the Farmers Insurance Open and Mexico Open, Springer makes for an appealing value placement bet option given his history on driver-heavy layouts.

Best of luck if you bet or play this golf DFS picks for the CJ Cup Byron Nelson!

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