The second RBC Heritage in the last 10 months will highlight the week at Harbour Town Golf Links. The PGA Tour returns to Hilton Head, South Carolina, after last June's delayed RBC Heritage was played just after the Tour restarted following its three-month pause because of the pandemic. This marks the first regular PGA Tour event -- non-major and non-opposite field event -- to be played twice since the PGA Tour returned, and it has a pretty great field for the second consecutive edition.
Let's take a closer look at this week's contest with odds provided via William Hill Sportsbook.
Event: RBC Heritage | Date: April 15-18
Location: Harbour Town Golf Links -- Hilton Head, South Carolina
Three things to know
1. State of Dustin Johnson? This has become a regular stop for D.J., whose game is not all that sharp right now. I never really worry about where D.J. is at because he can find something seemingly at any moment and turn everything around, but finishing outside the top 20 in four straight starts -- and missing a cut -- is akin to anyone else losing their PGA Tour card. His performance this week will be intriguing, especially on a course where he's had success even though it does not seem like it should suit his skillset all that well.
2. Zalatoris momentum: Speaking of PGA Tour cards, Masters runner-up Will Zalatoris is still (still!) not a full-time PGA Tour member. The only route for him to earn that membership before next season (2021-22) starts is to win a PGA Tour event. So does he keep up the momentum he grabbed at the Masters and threaten to do that in the months that remain before the end of the season? It's an interesting storyline not just for this week but from now until the FedEx Cup Playoffs. Oddly, if he does not win, he could theoretically be the No. 10 or No. 15-ranked player in the world who is also on the U.S. Ryder Cup team but not in the FedEx Cup Playoffs.
3. Seasoned short game: Harbour Town famously has some of the smallest greens anywhere on the PGA Tour and requires much less off the tee than most venues the Tour goes to. This is why guys like Webb Simpson (and Webb Simpson himself) have thrived. It brings everyone into more of the same bucket, which is maybe not the best way for golf to be played all the time. But for this one it's certainly interesting.
Want the sharpest DFS advice, picks and data-driven golf analysis? Listen below and subscribe to The First Cut Golf podcast where we explain what's happening on the course so you can win off of it.
Grading the field
It is excellent, especially considering its position just after the first major of the year. D.J. and Zalatoris are joined by Collin Morikawa, Tyrrell Hatton, Webb Simpson, Patrick Cantlay and Sungjae Im. In all, half of the top 10 and half of the top 30 players in the world will tee it up this week at Harbour Town. The strength of field here is roughly equivalent to last year's Tour Championship or Workday Charity Open. Grade: A
RBC Heritage picks
|Winner (25-1): It's such a good spot for him, and he's been playing well. Of the golfers in this field, only Paul Casey, Patrick Cantlay, Daniel Berger and Webb Simpson have been better than him in total strokes gained over the last three months.|
|Top 10 (+138): The defending champion has not hit his irons as well of late, but he's sixth all-time here in total strokes gained and coming off a nice week at the Masters. If you place a ball in the middle of the fairway (and it's easier to do that here than almost anywhere), Simpson is among the best players in all of golf.|
|Sleeper (45-1): He ranks in the top 10 players in this field in strokes gained from tee to green over the last three months. He did not qualify for the Masters last week (though he almost certainly would have led after Round 1), but he did contend at the Texas Open two weeks ago when Jordan Spieth won.|