PGA Tour Power Rankings 2021

3M Open Predictions

Golf Power Rankings 3M Open

By Tyler Duke

Each week, we will highlight our top players on the PGA Tour in order of likeliness to win the tournament.

Factors coming into play on the rankings are (in no order):

  • Recent form: How the player has performed in various aspects of his game in recent weeks.
  • Course history: How the player has performed at the host course if he has played there in the past.
  • Course fit: Used as a secondary or backup to course history, fit looks at certain skills that translate to success on the host course.
  • Strokes gained: Strokes gained will come into play in all of the factors above. Unless otherwise noted, strokes gained stats are taken from the player’s last 50 rounds.

Using the guidelines above, value can be found in the 3M Open betting market by highlighting players whose outlook for the tournament may be flying under the radar to the general public.

The weighted model this week is:

  • 30% SG: Approach
  • 25% GIRs Gained
  • 20% SG: Off-the-Tee
  • 15% Par 5: 550-600
  • 10% SG: Putting

How To Use Strokes Gained Statistics In Your Golf Betting Strategy

This week: 3M Open

  • Date: July 22-25
  • Location: Blaine, Minnesota
  • Course: TPC Twin Cities
  • How to watch: PGA Tour Live, Golf Channel, CBS
  • Purse: $6,600,600
  • Defending champ: Michael Thompson

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Course preview: TPC Twin Cities

The PGA Tour heads back to the United States and as far north as it gets all season for the 3M Open in Blaine, Minnesota. Just north of Minneapolis, TPC Twin Cities is a newer golf course overall and an exciting course to watch after the Open Championship, which often features some brutal golf. The 3M Open was one of the few tournaments to also be held in its usual slot last year and produced a surprise winner down the stretch in Michael Thompson.

Last week saw The Open Championship give us a bit of a different show than we typically expect in golf’s oldest major. Royal St. George’s was extremely green and playable compared to what we’re used to, and the lower winds than forecasted provided some American-styled golf that allowed Collin Morikawa to ball strike his way around the course for his second major. I expected The Open to be a tougher tournament for Morikawa’s game, but he took advantage of the conditions and continues to be the best iron player on the planet. Any week he gains strokes on the greens continues to be a great shot for him to win.

TPC Twin Cities is an Arnold Palmer design with a recent renovation aimed for the PGA Tour by Tom Lehman and Tim Herron. It hosted a PGA Tour Champions tournament from 2001 to 2018 before being brought up for the big Tour the least two seasons. TPC Twin Cities is a resort-style course with plenty of water hazards and trouble around, but it’s generally been an easy track to keep things in play and only penalizes shots far off-line. As a Par 71 at 7,468 yards, it’s been one of the easier courses on the schedule throughout its Champions Tour years and first two years on the PGA Tour. Even extremely high winds last year barely stopped Thompson from getting it to 20 under for the week.

With a couple years of data to look at now for TPC Twin Cities, it’s incredibly obvious that the course is a complete haven for pure ball strikers. The SG: Approach data from the first two years feature some huge numbers across the top of the leaderboard … showing that quality approach play is as valued here as you’ll see throughout the season. Very few players have managed to contend at all without putting on a clinic with the irons. We’ll use a strong combination of SG: Approach along with GIRs Gained to find those iron players for the week. Any missed greens at Twin Cities is a big mistake, and it has actually been a tough course to scramble at so far … likely due to the large, raised greens creating tough up and downs when you do miss.

With that being said, SG: Around the Green won’t be used at all this week. While scrambling has proven to be difficult, there just aren’t enough missed greens or variation around the greens to value it. The contenders at the 3M have needed no success in that category to be around the lead. SG: Putting will get a decent look with Thompson being an example of combining just irons and the putter to get a win last year. The pure Bent grass greens should favor guys who have a long history of liking the surface.

SG: Off the Tee will also get a heavy look for the week and is the preferred metric this week over just fairways or just distance. The higher elevation in Blaine creates some very long distances off the tee. What that does is makes longer hitters take less club and shorter hitters to close that gap for the week. Fairways haven’t shown to be too important, but players who have been hitting it off the map could find some penalty areas if they can’t keep it relatively straight.

Finally, SG: Par 5: 550-600 Yards is the key course-specific stat this week because of how important those holes have been to the contenders in the first two years. All three Par 5s at TPC Twin Cities are in that yardage range, and they have been torn up relative to the rest of the field by the Top 10 finishers. This should favor the longer hitters who have been able to get home in two or guys striping their short wedges in to make birdies.

Unsurprisingly, the field for the 3M Open is quite weak coming off a condensed stretch of big tournaments and with the Olympics coming next week. There are a handful of class players making the trip over from England including Dustin Johnson, Louis Oosthuizen, Patrick Reed, Tony Finau and Sergio Garcia. Michael Thompson will be defending his title as the No. 133 ranked player in the world.

Power Rankings: 3M Open

20. Maverick McNealy: On a nice stretch here where he’s managed to pair some decent irons and great driver with his usual great putting. Now he’ll be on surfaces that he loves and a course that should fit the style of golf he plays. Any plus week with his irons should put him in contention. Ranks 14th in SG: OTT.

19. Robert MacIntyre: His results in regular PGA Tour events have been quite poor, which is surprising when seeing some of the performances he’s put up in The Open and Masters. Last week he finished 8th at St. George’s, so maybe he can finally get some needed success in the states to get some status on the PGA Tour. The stats haven’t been good … ranks 66th in SG: OTT.

18. Emiliano Grillo: Had really been struggling with 3 rare missed cuts where he lost all of his ball striking and struggled with his short game as he typically does. Finished 3rd here in 2020 where he gained in all 4 categories. He can plot his way around here perfectly. Ranks 2nd in SG: APP.

17. Bubba Watson: Looks like he’s finding some form again with a couple nice performances at the Travelers and Rocket Mortgage. Had to miss The Open, but this type of course and style fits his game much better. Missed the cut here last year due to the short game. Ranks 6th in SG: OTT.

16. Charl Schwartzel: Quietly continues to play some nice golf almost everywhere he goes. The irons have come around and can carry him to the promised land if his putter obeys. Had a chance to win here last year before finishing 3rd despite not gaining any strokes on approach. Ranks 13th in GIRs Gained.

15. Adam Schenk: Him becoming a good putter would be a crazy difference maker in his career. Has all the length off the tee in the world and can occasionally get it going with his irons. Any short game success could make him a contender. Ranks 19th in GIRs Gained.

14. Doug Ghim: Another guy who showed some life here last year, and it actually happened without his ball striking showing up. Now he’s one of the best iron players on Tour each week, but his putter has never allowed him to get that first win. Ranks 1st in GIRs Gained.

13. Rickie Fowler: It really seems like he’s putting everything together slowly, but he hasn’t been able to string 4 rounds together yet in a tournament. I like to compare this course to Honda, which is a place he’s been awesome at for his career. Irons have shown promise. Ranks 28th in Par 5: 550-600 Yards. Always putts it well on Bent. Ranks 28th in Par 5: 550-600 Yards.

12. Stewart Cink: It’s been quite a year of ball striking for the veteran. He’s had some outrageous weeks of approach numbers as of late, but the driver and putter has occasionally left him. Also tends to like Bent grass greens. Hit it well last year at 3M. Ranks 1st in SG: APP.

11. Cameron Davis: A guy who has quickly produced some nice results at the 3M along with the Honda Classic. He gained 5 strokes on approach here in 2020 to finish 12th and has striped it in 3 starts at the Honda. Had a couple weeks to recover from his first victory and should play well here. Ranks 9th in Par 5: 550-600 Yards.

10. Cameron Tringale: Another Cameron that has been hitting it really well lately. He broke out a bit here last year to finish 3rd with a great performance with his irons and his putter. Added a nice finish at Honda this year as well. Promising to see him even play well in The Open. Ranks 1st in Par 5: 550-600 Yards.

9. Matthew Wolff: Disappointing to see he withdrew from The Open, and the hope is it wasn’t related to some of the mental health struggles he faced early in the year. This was the spot he debuted and won his first PGA Tour tournament in 2019, and he followed that up with a 12th last year. Ranks 12th in SG: Par 5: 550-600 Yards.

8. Dustin Johnson: Battled back on Sunday to finish 8th at The Open. Maybe that’s the tournament that gets his momentum going finally, but there’s been a lot of this all year without the A-game really coming out. Hasn’t played here and the corollary courses haven’t been great. Ranks 11th in SG: OTT.

7. Sergio Garcia: Has 4 straight Top 20s with his normal stuff, which is promising after he had a quick slump into the start of the summer. PGA National has been one of his best courses on Tour, and he loves to plot his way across tracks like this to stack up the birdies. As always, it’ll be about the putter. Ranks 2nd in SG: OTT.

6. Hank Lebioda: Now has 3 straight Top 10s on Tour despite losing strokes off the tee in all 3 tournaments. The rest of his game has been exceptional, and these are the surfaces he’s always putted best on. Gained nearly 8 strokes on approach here last year, but the rest of his game let him down. Ranks 9th in SG: P.

5. Jhonattan Vegas: Always a volatile player, this really seems like a spot that he could breakthrough for another win. Clearly has been at his best the more north he is in the U.S., and the form with the irons has been great. The putter can really go either way in extremes. Ranks 3rd in SG: OTT and 10th in GIRs Gained.

4. Tony Finau: Bounced back with a nice week at The Open after some rough stretches in his game ever since The Players. Those slumps are rare for him, and he’s coming to a course now where he gained nearly 10 strokes on approach last year when finishing 3rd. Ranks 1st in Par 5: 550-600 Yards and 8th in SG: APP.

3. Luke List: Here comes one of the most underrated elite ball strikers in the game finding some form at the right time. One of his career highlights was a playoff loss to Justin Thomas at the Honda in 2018. Played decently here last year and should be in great spirits coming off a 4th and 5th in his last 2 starts with negative strokes gained on the greens. Ranks 5th in SG: OTT and 8th in Par 5: 550-600 Yards.

2. Louis Oosthuizen: Went back and forth on how to rank him this week. On one hand he’s rarely been able to perform his best in lower tier events on the PGA Tour considering he’s never won in the U.S. But he also is playing perhaps the best golf of his career and hungrier than ever to get some wins. Ranks 1st in SG: P and 5th in GIRs Gained.

1. Keegan Bradley: Loves playing at the more northern courses on the PGA Tour, and his ball striking is exceptional almost every single week. There’s not many courses you’d think he can putt well at, but these greens make a bit of sense for him. He gained 4 strokes on the greens here in 2019. If the short game shows up, this should be a week he has a chance to win. Ranks 3rd in SG: APP, 9th in GIRs Gained and 1st overall in the model.

*All stats are from a player’s last 36 rounds.

3M Open betting odds

2021 3M Open Odds

Game
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Dustin Johnson
Bet now
+750
Bet now
+750
Louis Oosthuizen
Bet now
+1200
Bet now
+1400
Tony Finau
Bet now
+1400
Bet now
+1800
Patrick Reed
Bet now
+1600
Bet now
+1800
Cameron Tringale
Bet now
+2500
Bet now
+3000
Brian Harman
Bet now
+2500
Bet now
+2500
Robert MacIntyre
Bet now
+2800
Bet now
+3500
Emiliano Grillo
Bet now
+3500
Bet now
+4000
Sergio Garcia
Bet now
+3500
Bet now
+3000
Matthew Wolff
Bet now
+3500
Bet now
+3300
Bubba Watson
Bet now
+3500
Bet now
+3000
Cameron Davis
Bet now
+4000
Bet now
+3500
Keegan Bradley
Bet now
+4000
Bet now
+5000
Hank Lebioda
Bet now
+6000
Bet now
+5000
Seamus Power
Bet now
+4500
Bet now
OTB
Rickie Fowler
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+5000
Maverick McNealy
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+5000
Lucas Herbert
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+5000
Patrick Rodgers
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+6600
Gary Woodland
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+5000

View all the odds at top US Sportsbooks like DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook and BetMGM.

Up next on the PGA Tour

The PGA Tour will technically take a break for a week before a double-header with the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational in Memphis along with the Barracuda Championship at Tahoe Mountain Club in California. But golf fans will still be treated for the weekend with the Olympic Men’s Golf Competition taking place in Japan at Kasumigaseki Country Club. Justin Rose will be looking to defend his gold medal from the Olympic Games in Brazil in 2016 as the No. 47 ranked player in the world.