Let’s face it, seeing Patrick Cantlay play golf makes watching paint dry a much better option for entertainment.
Cantlay’s snooze-inducing style is the antithesis of the fist pumping Tiger Woods and energetic hulk-like Bryson DeChambeau, but the dude can flat out drain putts from just about anywhere on the green.
So, after Cantlay, dubbed “Patty Ice” by the fans last week, took down Muscles DeChambeau in an epic 6-hole playoff at the BMW Championship you’d think he’d be favored at the Tour Championship at East Lake GC in Atlanta.
No, not really.
The odds makers still like the spunky spaniard Jon Rahm even though he starts four shots behind Cantlay in the unique scoring format at the Tour Championship that rewards the No. 1 FedEx Cup ranked player (Cantlay) with a built-in two stroke lead. (Rahm is ranked 4th in the FedEx Cup standings).
Cantlay starts with a 2 shot advantage over second ranked Tony Finau, three shots over Bryson DeChambeau and five shots over Cameron Smith. He’ll begin the tournament at 10-under par so it’s going to be extremely difficult for the tail end of the field to overtake him with that many strokes behind. Players from ranking 26-30 must make up an astonishing 10 strokes.
Jon Rahm (+350)
You gotta think, there’s no way Cantlay can duplicate his clutch putting performance at the Tour Championship and Rahm has been on a roll and has the explosive game and great attitude to make up the four shot deficit. Rahm started off hot at the BMW but tailed off on the weekend with 70-70. He’s had a heckuva run the last couple months and has an unbelievable 14 top-10s in 21 starts this season. The Rahmster is No. 1 on Tour in scoring average and birdie average so it really shouldn’t be surprising that he’s the favorite by many to win the Tour Championship.
Patrick Cantlay (+450)
How good was Patty Ice’s putting at the BMW? Off the freakin’ charts. Get this, from three to five feet all week, he was 41 for 41. Patty Ice gained 14.58 strokes on the field with his putting, the most strokes gained putting in a 72-hole event since tracking began on the PGA Tour seventeen years ago. Don’t forget, too, with his BMW victory he became the only three-time winner during the PGA Tour’s super season. He also won the 2020 Zozo Championship and The Memorial. Fact is, if Cantlay rules the moss and if he goes 41 for 41 again at theTour Championship he’s most likely going to cash in on the $15 million first place prize.
Bryson DeChambeau (+500)
You’re kidding me, he shoots -27 and loses at the BMW Championship. DeChambeau played four days of fabulous golf, but it was troubling to see him miss so many putts from 5, 6 and 7 feet and he looked shaky and unsure around the greens. That said, if he bombs it off the tee as consistently as he did last week, he’s going to be in the mix again. Just don’t call him Brooksy.
Tony Finau (+700)
After so many second place finishes, the universally liked Finau finally closed the deal at the Northern Trust. Finau is only spotting Cantlay two shots so mathematically he’s got the best chance to win if Cantlay falters. He bombs it off the tee with a 305-yard average, the key to Finau’s success is his iron game. If he can hit the ball close to the hole consistently at East Lake he can win the FedEx Cup. Hey, if he does somehow wind up in second place again, well, that’s worth a cool $5 million.
Justin Thomas (+1400)
If J.T. can get the putter going, he has a chance even though he’s starting 6 strokes behind Cantlay. Last year, he played East Lake in fine fashion finishing T2 with three rounds of 66 and a 71 on the second day. He finished T3 at the 2019 Tour Championship at East Lake. Thomas thrives on tough layouts as evidenced by his win at this year’s PLAYERS Championship.
Jordan Spieth (+1800)
Spieth is starting six strokes behind Cantlay before he sticks the tee in the ground on the first tee, so it’ll be difficult to win. That is, of course, unless Spieth starts putting like it’s 2015. That’s the year he won the FedEx Cup at East Lake with an impressive four stroke victory and four rounds in the 60s.
Dustin Johnson (+2000)
D.J. was dominant at East Lake last year shooting a 21-under, three strokes clear of the field to win the 2020 FedEx Cup. He clearly likes the course and will probably play well, but, geez, he’s starting 7 strokes behind Cantlay before they tee off.
Rory McIlroy (+2500)
Rors is a two time winner of the FedEx Cup (2016 and 2019) so he knows how to get it done, but like Xander he has to make up 8 strokes on Cantlay and that’s a tall order even for Rory who can get hot and post birdies and eagles in bunches.
Xander Schauffele (+2500)
Nobody, it seems, is within striking distance of the leaders on the weekend more than Xander. On the plus side, he finished second to D.J. at last year’s FedEx Cup at East Lake shooting an impressive -18 with with four rounds in the 60’s (67-65-67-66). On the negative side, he’s starting 8 strokes behind Cantlay and that maybe too much to make up. By the way, Xander also finished second to Rory McIlroy in the 2019 FedEx Cup.
Cameron Smith (+2800)
The Mullet Man can put some serious low numbers on the card. His 60 at the Northern Trust was an amazing round and he barely missed shooting 59. He’s starting 5 strokes behind Cantlay so Smith is gonna need more than a couple of rounds in the low 60s.
Colin Morikawa (+3500)
Morikawa is spotting Cantlay 7 strokes so it’s be a tall order, but he’s had a great year and he plays East Lake well. He finished in 6th place at the 2020 Tour Championship with three rounds in the 60s.