2018 FedEx St. Jude Classic Picks, Including the Driver-Off-The-Deck BOLD Play of the Week #isitThursdayyet

Some would think that it might be a PGA Tour tournament director’s worst nightmare to be slotted the week before a major championship; however, it actually may be a benefit in some cases as not everyone takes the Tiger Woods approach in consistently taking weeks off before every major.  

In the case of this week’s FedEx St Jude Classic, the field is undoubtedly boosted by the fact that the U.S. Open is next week, never mind that it’ll be played two time zones far NW of Memphis- these guys simply want to enter our national championship with their games sharp as can be.  Just ask Phil Mickelson (who does the anti-Tiger and plays the week before nearly every major).

The host venue is TPC Southwind, which is annually one of the toughest non-major tracks on Tour.  Tight fairways and small, undulating greens make the 7,244 yard course a daunting task for everyone in the field to be sure.  The Southwind track will soon take the place of Firestone to host the annual August WGC event on the PGA Tour’s calendar, as long-time sponsor Bridgestone has decided to halt its sponsorship.  And so, you guessed it, this will be the last time that the Tour swings through Memphis the week before the U.S. Open.

Now, let’s hop into some picks for this week:

LOCKZILLA

Henrik Stenson
Henrik Stenson
– Count me among the surprised to see the Swedish Terminator in the field this week, as it’s his first appearance here since 2012 when he finished t-13th.  Henrik is never far from winning form, as posting top 20s on a consistent basis is just what he does as oh yeah, he’s posted 6 straight top 25s on Tour, most recently a t-13th last week at the Memorial.  A no-brainer Lockzilla auto top 15 with winning upside this week.

SEMI-FLIER

Shawn Stefani
Shawn Stefani
– The 36-year-old is never one of the more consistent players on Tour, but several times a season when he starts to heat up, it seems that few people notice = opportunity to strike.  He’s made his past 3 cuts, with his best finish during that stretch being t-26th two weeks ago at the Byron Nelson, which of course is nothing overly noteworthy; however, his track record here is definitely noteworthy, as he’s made 3 of 5 cuts, 2 of which going for top 10s, with a t-7th in 2013 and a t-9th in 2016.  I’ll call right now for the Texas native to add a 3rd to that top 10 mark this week.

HOSEL-ROCKET BUST

Byeong Hun An
Byeong Hun An
– A close call on his first career win last week at the Memorial, but don’t fall for the trap thinking that breakthrough victory is about to happen this week in his debut on TPC Soutwind.  Stay away this week and thank me later.

DRIVER-OFF-THE-DECK BOLD PLAY OF THE WEEK

Joel Dahmen
Joel Dahmen
– Yes, I most certainly am biased and partial to him as a part of the fellow “Joel” club.  Shout out to ya, brother!  All kidding aside, Joel has been playing some mighty fine golf of late, with 3 straight top 20 finishes, including a t-20th two weeks ago at the Fort Worth Invitational.  Oh yeah, and he finished t-18th here last year in his tourney debut.  Joel Dahmen is your Driver-off-the-Deck BOLD play of the week!

#isitThursdayyet

Joel Harrington
@joel4deepgolf

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