Tiger Woods score: Avoids being cut as struggles with putter persist at 2018 Northern Trust

Tiger Woods kept a clean card for 14 holes on Friday in Round 2 of The Northern Trust, but faltered a little at the end and shot a even-par 71 to back up his even-par 71 from Thursday. It was enough to barely make the cut by one, but not enough to truly wriggle his way into contention.

Woods again played the par 5s at Ridgewood Country Club well. After his only two birdies in Round 1 came at two of the three par 5s, Woods again took advantage of the longer holes. Following a front nine 34, Tiger birdied the par-5 13th to get to 2 under on the day and overall. Then it went sideways. 

A bogey at the par-3 15th left him needing something decent coming in to clear the even-par cut line. He saved a par at the 17th but then bogeyed the 18th on a four-foot putt to fall back to even. It was enough to leave everyone sweating a bit about Woods playing the weekend, but he eventually made it to Saturday despite the number bouncing back and forth between even par and 1 under.

It hasn't been the most inspiring 36 holes of golf as Woods has been just a little off in pretty much every area and isn't carrying a putter hot enough to make up for his deficiencies. In fact, his putter was downright terrible in Round 2 as he lost three strokes (!) to the field on the greens. The 18th was a microcosm of that. Needing a two putt to be assured of making the cut, Woods took three from 28 feet.

He hit 16 of 18 greens in regulation and couldn't crack par. That's not a statistic he'll be pleased with going into Saturday and Sunday. Neither is this one.

The problem now for Woods is how far back he is of the lead going into the weekend. This has been a theme throughout Woods' year. Of course, so has Saturday scoring. Woods leads the PGA Tour in Round 3 scoring average at 68.42, but he'll need something far better than that if he hopes to win his first tournament since 2013 on Sunday.

The good news for Woods is that he's treading water with his FedEx Cup ranking. He started out the first leg of these playoffs ranked No. 20 and is projected at No. 25 even if he stays where he is after 36 holes at Ridgewood. The top 30 move on to East Lake a month from now, somewhere Woods has his eye on and hasn't been since 2013.

CBS Sports Writer

Kyle Porter began his sports writing career with CBS Sports in 2012. He covers golf, writes poetry about Rory McIlroy's swing, stays ready on Tiger watch and loves the Masters more than anyone you know.... Full Bio

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