rory.png
USATSI

Scenic Waialae Country Club in Honolulu means low scores and tremendous finishes every year, and the 2021 Sony Open could shape up to deliver another thriller in paradise. Play at the first full-field PGA Tour event of the calendar year begins 12:10 p.m. ET on Thursday at the 7,044-yard, par-70 course Thursday with 140 of the PGA Tour's top golfers, including defending champion Cameron Smith. Among the luminaries in the 2021 Sony Open field includes defending PGA champion Collin Morikawa as well as 2012 U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson.

Simpson enters the week as the 12-1 favorite in the latest 2021 Sony Open odds from William Hill Sportsbook, with Morikawa and Harris English not far behind at 14-1. Smith aims for his third PGA Tour win as a 28-1 long shot on this week's PGA odds board. Before making any 2021 Sony Open picks, be sure to see the latest golf predictions and projected leaderboard from the proven computer model at SportsLine.

SportsLine's prediction model, built by DFS pro Mike McClure, has been on fire since the return of the PGA Tour in June. In fact, it's up over $13,500 on its best bets since the restart, nailing tournament after tournament.

In the final standard PGA event of 2020, McClure nailed Viktor Hovland's win at +2500 in his best bets. That was one of many huge calls he made last year. After nailing Sergio Garcia (+5500) finishing on top of the leaderboard at the Sanderson Farms Championship, McClure finished up over $6,200 yet again on his best bets. The model had him in the top five from the start and McClure's best bets included Garcia winning outright. Those who followed that advice saw a massive +5500 return. 

He also finished profitable at the U.S. Open, nailing two of his best bets, including a +1100 top-five bet on Matthew Wolff. McClure hit a top-five bet (+1200) on Doc Redman at the Wyndham Championship, finishing up over $700 on his best bets. Those are just some of his recent big returns. 

In all, the advanced computer model has also nailed a whopping six majors entering the weekend. Anyone who has followed its golf picks has seen massive returns. 

Now that the 2021 Sony Open field is locked, SportsLine simulated the event 10,000 times, and the results were surprising. Head to SportsLine now to see the projected leaderboard.

The model's top 2021 Sony Open predictions 

One huge shocker the model is calling for at the Sony Open 2021: Collin Morikawa, one of the favorites at 14-1, barely cracks the top five. Morikawa was one of the hottest players on tour last season, capping that run by winning the 2020 PGA Championship in August. He finished a respectable T-7 last week at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, but he's failed to crack the top-40 in four of his last six starts on the PGA Tour. 

Morikawa's inconsistent performances can be directly attributed to his putting. The 23-year-old enters this week's event ranked 231st in total putting (371.4), 220th in strokes gained: putting (-.753) and 125th in overall putting average (1.619), which doesn't bode well for his chances to finish on top of the leaderboard this week. He's not a strong pick to win it all and there are far better values in the Sony Open 2021 field.

Another surprise: Sungjae Im, a 22-1 long shot, makes a strong run at the title. Im has a much better chance to win it all than his odds imply, so he's a target for anyone looking for a huge payday. Im has played nine times already this season and has earned over $1.6 million in the process.

Im tied for second at the Masters in November, and was fifth at last week's Sentry Tournament of Champions. In Im's two trips to Waialae Country Club, he has finished 16th and 21st with six of his eight rounds in the 60s. Im is in a prime position for a big finish in Honolulu and should be one of your 2021 Sony Open picks.

How to make 2021 Sony Open picks

Also, the model is targeting four other golfers with odds of 22-1 or higher to make a strong run at the title. Anyone who backs these underdogs could hit it big. You can only see them here.

So who wins the 2021 Sony Open? And which long shots stun the golfing world? Check out the odds below and then visit SportsLine to see the projected 2021 Sony Open leaderboard, all from the model that's nailed six golf majors and is up over $13,500 since the restart, and find out. 

2021 Sony Open odds (via William Hill)

Collin Morikawa 14-1
Webb Simpson 14-1
Harris English 16-1
Daniel Berger 20-1
Hideki Matsuyama 22-1
Sungjae Im 22-1
Joaquin Niemann 25-1
Cameron Smith 28-1
Ryan Palmer 30-1
Kevin Kisner 30-1
Abraham Ancer 30-1
Russell Henley 33-1
Adam Scott 33-1
Billy Horschel 35-1
Matt Kuchar 35-1
Zach Johnson 40-1
Sergio Garcia 40-1
Lanto Griffin 45-1
Brendon Todd 45-1
Sebastian Munoz 50-1
Emiliano Grillo 50-1
Marc Leishman 50-1
Jason Kokrak 50-1
Charles Howell 50-1
Erk Van Rooyen 50-1
Brian Harman 50-1
Patton Kizzire 66-1
Keegan Bradley 66-1
Kevin Na 66-1
Talor Gooch 66-1
Si-Woo Kim 70-1
Chez Reavie 70-1
Carlos Ortiz 70-1
Matthew NeSmith 80-1
Mackenzie Hughes 80-1
Russell Knox 80-1
J.T. Poston 90-1
Brandt Snedeker 90-1
Stewart Cink 100-1
Scott Piercy 100-1
Takumi Kanaya 100-1
Rory Sabbatini 100-1
Tom Hoge 100-1
Cameron Davis 100-1
Branden Grace 100-1