2024 PLAYERS Championship Tournament Preview: Everything You Need To Know About TPC Sawgrass

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Written By John Haslbauer | Last Updated
the players championship odds

It’s one of the biggest golf weeks of the year on the PGA TOUR. THE PLAYERS Championship odds are the next stop for bettors at TPC Sawgrass. Compare THE PLAYERS odds at the best sports betting sites to increase your potential PGA TOUR golf betting payouts. Scottie Scheffler, Rory McIlroy, and Viktor Hovland project as the top favorites for this upcoming tournament.

At long last, my very favorite event of the season is finally here. You could say I like this event…better than most.

The 2024 PLAYERS Championship at famed TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. marks the fourth Signature Event of the year, with none bigger thus far. While last week’s Signature Event at the Arnold Palmer Invitational featured a top-heavy collective of all the TOUR’s best, this week will step it up a notch further, with the top 144 on the PGA TOUR teeing it up.

I’ve been fortunate to play TPC Sawgrass back in 2021, and I always enjoy watching the game’s best navigate a familiar course.

TPC Sawgrass features water hazards on 17 holes. Pete Dye’s most famous design will bait players into taking on these hazards. The constant threat of hazards has resulted in incredibly volatile leaderboards over the years. Of the top-20 players in SG: TOT over the last 36 rounds, only four have avoided missing the cut at this event within the last three years (Justin Thomas, Christiaan Bezuidenhout, Tom Hoge, and Sungjae Im). With that in mind, it’s a good idea to embrace the volatility, diversify exposure, and identify low-owned pivot plays for DFS.

Here’s a full look at everything to expect from the 2024 THE PLAYERS Championship odds.


Scroll to the bottom of this article to compare complete PLAYERS Championship outright odds across legal U.S. sportsbooks. Find the favorites in Florida this week with odds shorter than 20-to-1.


Always renowned for hosting a major-caliber field, the palpable stakes and historical context of THE PLAYERS has earned the distinction of “The Fifth Major.” Admittedly, some of that luster feels lost on this event now, as a tournament known for hosting the convergence of all of the game’s best in one place will not do so yet again in 2024. In a year where players like Jake Knapp, Austin Eckroat, and Nick Dunlap have continued to emerge as first-time winners, the absence of Sawgrass stalwarts like Jon Rahm, Cam Smith, Bryson DeChambeau, and Sergio Garcia has never been more palpable. Until LIV players find a path back to this event, it feels wrong to designate this event as a fifth major.

On the bright side, there is still no shortage of star power to headline in Ponte Vedra Beach, and while the PGA TOUR “stars” have been slow to win events this year, they seemingly all enter in great all-around form. Rory McIlroy and Scottie Scheffler will headline as the favorites and past champions for the second consecutive week. Other elite talents like Viktor Hovland, Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele, and Max Homa enter this field of 144 in top form.

We were hopeful to see Tiger Woods make an appearance this week after withdrawing early from the Genesis Invitational due to illness. A former champion (where is he not?), TPC Sawgrass marks the ideal venue for Woods to contend, given the palpable stakes, short and flat terrain, and volatility that has tended to offset the advantage of the typical favorites. Alas, we may have to wait until The Masters to see Tiger next.

The list of past champions returning to tee it up this week includes Scheffler, Thomas, McIlroy, Webb Simpson, Si Woo Kim, Jason Day, Matt Kuchar, and Adam Scott. Notably, Tiger Woods and Davis Love III are the only repeat winners at THE PLAYERS over the last 30 years, demonstrating the volatility of this event. 


Much like the other Pete Dye designs we see on TOUR, TPC Sawgrass is a positional course. With its persistent water hazards and quirky green-side bunkers and undulations, TPC Sawgrass mitigates the advantage of longer hitters, instead rewarding players with an elite approach and short game.

Once remnant swamp land, the foundational property for TPC Sawgrass was purchased in the 1970s for $1. The goal was to transform it into a state-of-the-art tournament golf course to host THE PLAYERS Championship. Today, we see a modern marvel and the quintessential tournament stadium course with some of the most pristine manicuring in golf. The par-3 17th island green is perhaps the most recognizable hole in all of golf. The final three holes are my favorite closing stretch of any course on the PGA TOUR and lay the stage for a late charge from chasers while bringing bogey into play with nervy shots over water from those trying to preserve a lead.

In recent years, we’ve been robbed a bit of the drama THE PLAYERS has seemingly always delivered. Inclement weather virtually wiped half of the 2022 field out of contention by creating a severe advantage for players with Morning-Afternoon tee times. I will still remember Cam Smith’s clutch shot-making down the stretch, which included one of the most daring attacks of the Sunday pin on 17 in tournament history, even if the TOUR is intent on wiping that moment out of its flagship event’s history since he promptly left for LIV. In 2023, World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler asserted his dominance and ran away with this event for a juice-free Sunday back nine. Interestingly, he is still chasing his first PGA TOUR win since that dominant showing. Here’s to hoping for a more climactic finish in 2024 with less intrusive weather.

The stakes don’t get much higher than a purse of $25 million (top prize $4.5 million) in one of the toughest fields, with an electric crowd. At par 72 sitting just under 7,200 yards, TPC Sawgrass rewards four days of well-rounded play. We’ve seen bombers like Rory McIlroy and Jason Day win as often as shorter specialists like Si Woo Kim, Matt Kuchar, and Webb Simpson. Creativity and deft touch around the greens would seem the common through-line when looking down the list of annual contenders. Runoffs around the greens will give players even more options to use their creativity, with many “Texas Wedges” drawn from these tight lies.

For TPC Sawgrass course specs, hole-by-hole breakdown with yardages, and past PLAYERS winners with their pre-tournament odds, visit our PLAYERS Championship odds page.

Editor’s Note


You’ll be hard-pressed to land on any one player with conviction on the basis of course history alone. Viktor Hovland, Max Homa, Russell Henley, and Adam Hadwin are the only players in this week’s field who have finished top 20 in each of the last two years. Notables like Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Patrick Cantlay, and Hideki Matsuyama have all missed the cut here multiple times over the last five years. Looking at the favorites, Scheffler and McIlroy have each won THE PLAYERS within the last five years but do not have another finish inside the top 30 over that span here.

Despite the star power of winners here over recent years, just as many unheralded players have produced top-five finishes. David Lingmerth, Anirban Lahiri, Jim Furyk, Jhonattan Vegas, Eddie Pepperell, Brandt Snedeker, Jimmy Walker, Jason Dufner, Kyle Stanley, Kevin Chappell, Colt Knost and Ken Duke each have T6 finishes dating back to 2016. We should expect to see some parity on the leaderboard come Sunday. Longshot bets are still plenty viable for THE PLAYERS Championship odds.

Justin Thomas

This, again, is not a week to chase course history blindly. A course this susceptible to gusting winds with water in play on 17 holes will lend itself to randomness and unrewarded quality shots. Justin Thomas has, however, proven an exception as someone able to find consistency despite Sawgrass’ volatility. The 2021 champion has never missed the cut here over eight career appearances and has six finishes inside the top 35. Thomas was left for dead on the bad side of a severe weather draw in 2022 and still managed to post an impressive T33 finish.

His steady success is a testament to his elite iron play and crafty touch around the greens. And he looks to be rounding back into his world-class form with two top-15 finishes over his last three starts.

Others Excelling At THE PLAYERS

After Thomas, the rest of the top 10 in Course History include Viktor Hovland, Max Homa, Scottie Scheffler, Hideki Matsuyama, Tommy Fleetwood, Jason Day, Justin Rose, Si Woo Kim, and Christiaan Bezuidenhout. This illustrates a trend of veteran course managers with proven results in high-pressure events.

Five players in this field have delivered multiple T10 finishes over the last five years: Viktor Hovland, Hideki Matsuyama, Tommy Fleetwood, Keegan Bradley, and Brian Harman.

Five players have avoided missing the cut in four consecutive trips to THE PLAYERS: Justin Thomas, Si Woo Kim, Tom Hoge, Brian Harman, and Denny McCarthy.

Course Comps

Shorter Pete Dye courses correlate more than any other architect’s. For the most part, Dye courses share the same philosophy: force strategic, positional tee shots. Penalize wayward approaches with complex bunkering and tricky greenside runoffs. The top-10 players SG: T2G on Pete Dye courses are Scottie Scheffler, Keith Mitchell, Xander Schauffele, Rory McIlroy, Collin Morikawa, Austin Eckroat, Justin Thomas, Doug Ghim, Ludvig Aberg, and Robert MacIntyre.

Unpacking those Dye courses, Harbour Town, Stadium Course, and TPC River Highlands most closely resemble the layouts and design at TPC Sawgrass. They have produced overlapping leaderboards over the years of players who are accurate off the tee, possess strong irons, and show crafty around-the-green play. Webb Simpson, Si Woo Kim, and Matt Kuchar are approach specialists with crossover wins at THE PLAYERS and these comp courses.

Cam Smith’s 2022 win furthered an interesting trend of crossover winners between this event and the Sony Open. Four of the last seven Sony Open winners are PLAYERS champions. The stakes and field strength of the two events could not be more different. However, both courses do share exposure to gusting winds and emphasize positional tee shots on a Bermuda layout. You’ll find Grayson Murray’s name at the bottom of the odds board this week if you are looking to take that narrative for a spin.

I’m also looking closely at Sedgefield CC and Innisbrook (Copperhead) as other Bermuda courses which favor a similar profile. TPC Scottsdale features a similar assortment of risk-reward holes with abundant hazards. It has seen consistent success in recent years from players like Simpson, Matsuyama, Thomas, Kuchar, and Rickie Fowler. Finally, on a more secondary basis, East Lake and Colonial CC are worth referencing for similar positional play and moderate scoring difficulty.

The top-10 players in SG: TOT across each of these comp courses are Scottie Scheffler, Xander Schauffele, Sam Burns, Justin Thomas, Russell Henley, Jordan Spieth, Nick Taylor, Patrick Cantlay, Cam Davis, and Hideki Matsuyama.


  • SG: OTT / SG: OTT (Positional Courses)
  • Fairway Percentage / Average Distance from Fairway Edge / Fairway Bunker Avoidance
  • SG: APP 
  • Birdies or Better Gained Gained
  • Bogey Avoidance
  • SG: ARG / Scrambling
  • Par 4: 450-500
  • Par-5 Scoring
  • SG: Putting (L36, Bermuda)
  • SG: T2G (Pete Dye Courses)
  • SG: Ball Striking (<7,200 Yard Courses)
  • Course & Comp Course History

As per usual with Pete Dye courses, distance is simply a nice bonus to have at TPC Sawgrass. Many of the neighboring water hazards and tight tree lines take the driver out of hand. With that in mind, I’m not looking too closely at the Driving Accuracy. The field should play inherently more accurately when laying up off the tee. Players hit fairways at an above-average rate of 61% at TPC Sawgrass to support that claim.

Even still, I’ll look for players who excel in total driving to position themselves well and avoid the penalty areas.  The top 10 players in weighted strokes off-the-tee (SG: OTT, SG: OTT on Comp Positional Courses, Fairways Gained, Fairway Bunker Avoidance, and Average Distance from Edge of Fairway) are Si Woo Kim, Aaron Rai, Erik van Rooyen, Kevin Yu, Vincent Norrman, Carson Young, Adam Svensson, Tom Kim, Min Woo Lee, and Akshay Bhatia. Kim and Rai stand with a large gap between themselves and the rest of the field in terms of accurate driving on comp venues.

As a workaround to SG: OTT to approximate tee shots on courses with a high volume of forced layups, I’m looking for players who rate out well in SG: Tee-to-Green on courses under 7,200 yards. The top 10 from this category are Scottie Scheffler, Justin Thomas, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Rory McIlroy, Russell Henley, Patrick Cantlay, Jordan Spieth, Hideki Matsuyama, and Collin Morikawa.

While distance doesn’t rule, it’s going to help on the four par 5s. Those with plus distance can reach all four in two. The top 10 players in Par-5 Scoring entering this week are Matt Fitzpatrick, Min Woo Lee, Eric van Rooyen, Wyndham Clark, Patrick Cantlay, Shane Lowry, Tom Kim, Grayson Murray, Doug Ghim, and Scottie Scheffler.

Approach And Short Game

While THE PLAYERS has bred a diverse cast of winning profiles over the years, the common theme seems to be “fairway to green.” The best players on Approach and Around-The-Green have stockpiled wins. With the medley of grass types on these over-seeded greens and a number of forced layups off the tee, I’m emphasizing the best iron and wedge players.

The top-10 players SG: APP over the last 36 rounds are Tom Hoge, Collin Morikawa, Tony Finau, Scottie Scheffler, Jake Knapp, Keith Mitchell, Matthieu Pavon, Xander Schauffele, Christiaan Bezuidenhout, and Corey Conners. The top-10 players in SG: ARG over the same span are SH Kim, Justin Thomas, Hideki Matsuyama, Martin Laird, Aaron Baddeley, Mackenzie Hughes, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Maverick McNealy, and Ryo Hisatune.

To wrap up, the ideal player this week should be top 50 in SG: APP, SG: ARG, and Comp Course History, and above average in Weighted Driving and Par-5 Scoring. Just six players fit that bill: Justin Thomas, Scottie Scheffler, Collin Morikawa, Max Homa, Lucas Glover, and Austin Eckroat.

Correlation And TPC Sawgrass

Looking at the stat correlations this week for TPC Sawgrass, there are some notable shifts compared to TOUR average. Here, P4: 450-500, Par-5 Scoring, and Par-3 Scoring each fall outside the top 10. Instead, Good Drives Gained and total Par-4 Scoring make the most notable jumps in importance. Just outside the top 10, we also see notable jumps in the importance of SG: P 15-20 ft and SG: ARG. Meanwhile, Sand Saves Gained and Prox 200+ drop in importance.

Top-10 Correlated Stats with SG: TOT
Top-10 Correlated Stats with SG: TOT at THE PLAYERS

There are just eight players who rate out above average in each of the above top-10 stat categories for TPC Sawgrass: Scottie Scheffler, Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa, Austin Eckroat, Max Homa, Si Woo Kim, Lucas Glover, and Stephan Jaeger.


Ball Striking prowess prevails at TPC Sawgrass, and despite being knocked down a peg from an odds perspective, we’ve seen the same old Viktor Hovland in 2024, who contended in all Majors and won the 2023 TOUR Championship. While he doesn’t fit the traditional narrative of short game creativity that has rewarded recent winners like Scheffler, Smith, and Thomas, TPC Sawgrass has proven more than any other venue on the PGA TOUR that there are many different avenues contenders can take.

Take 2022 PLAYERS Champion Cameron Smith. Many would have written him off as a fit for TPC Sawgrass, given his volatility off the tee. In the end, he atoned for that weakness in his game by playing to his strength in the other three facets of his game. I see a similar path for Hovland, who continues to demonstrate elite form off-the-tee, on approach, and putting to mask his shortcomings around the greens. Proving capable of winning at Olympia Fields and Muirfield Village over the last year, I’m not concerned about Hovland playing well on courses that demand Scrambling for Bogey Avoidance.

As further evidence of improvement from the 26-year-old, he finished top 20 in all four Majors and gained strokes around the green in three of the four. That tells me Hovland can focus his preparation in anticipation of the game’s biggest stages. He shared comments ahead of the Arnold Palmer Invitational that he is constantly tinkering with his game to find new ways to improve. To me, that’s a clear sign of a player who is experimental week to week but plays to his strengths in the biggest events of the year.

It wasn’t long ago that Hovland earned himself a place beside the game’s biggest stars. With top-10s in the last two years at THE PLAYERS, Hovland may be the only player in this field with no question marks behind his course history, ball striking, and putting leading in.


With all the course-fit profiles in mind, I’m leaning early toward the below player pool. Naturally, I’m looking their way in the 2024 PLAYERS Championship odds as well. I’ve broken the list down by actualized pricing/odds tier for DraftKings and rankings projections for Underdog Fantasy, with odds and pricing released earlier this week.


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Tier 1

Scottie Scheffler
Viktor Hovland

Tier 2

Justin Thomas
Collin Morikawa
Max Homa
Shane Lowry
Sam Burns
Tommy Fleetwood

Tier 3

Keegan Bradley
JT Poston
Si Woo Kim
Jason Day
Tom Kim
Hideki Matsuyama

Tier 4

Tom Hoge
Nick Taylor
Adam Hadwin
Russell Henley
Brian Harman
Akshay Bhatia

Tier 5

Austin Eckroat
Ryo Hisatune
Aaron Rai

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For my BTN model this week, I’m prioritizing SG: APP, SG: ARG, Comp Course History, SG: OTT (<7,200 Courses) and Fairway Proximity, followed by a more balanced mix of SG: P (L36, Bermuda), Par-5 Scoring, Bogey Avoidance, and Birdies or Better Gained.

Model Favorites

To no surprise, Scottie Scheffler sits atop my model yet again in his quest to become the third player in this event’s 50-year history to repeat as champion. As the most consistently dominant player in the world from tee-tee-green over the past year, TPC Sawgrass should feed into Scheffler’s strengths while he continues to search for answers on the green. Given the volatility of this event, this is still not a spot I would consider the odds premium that comes with backing the favorite.

After Scheffler, my model’s top 10 is rounded out by Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas, Keith Mitchell, Collin Morikawa, Austin Eckroat, Corey Conners, Ludvig Aberg, Viktor Hovland, and Sam Burns.

I have not placed any future bets on THE PLAYERS to date, but with initial odds already released, I see myself gravitating towards a card with exposure to at least one of Viktor Hovland, Justin Thomas, or Sam Burns at the top and Shane Lowry, Keegan Bradley, or Brian Harman amongst longshots. I’ll likely wait for the odds to readjust on Monday before locking in my 2024 PLAYERS Championship bets.

Thanks for reading, and good luck with your 2024 PLAYERS Championship bets!


Bet on any golfer by clicking on THE PLAYERS Championship odds in the table. It should begin to populate by midday Monday as sportsbooks open odds for THE PLAYERS.