Tiger Woods score: Fight to break par after tough start at Dell Technologies Championship

It is fitting that on Labor Day weekend, Tiger Woods would be working, grinding and clawing for something at or around par. He finished with a 1-over 72 in Round 1 of the Dell Technologies Championship on Friday at TPC Boston after getting off to a slow start but bouncing back a little bit at the end.

Woods started his round on the back nine of the course and played the first seven holes in 3 over. He hit 4 of his first 5 fairways in that span, but just 3 of 7 greens in regulation, which would go on to be a theme throughout the day. Woods only hit 9 greens in regulation overall, and an area of his game -- approach shots -- that had served him well all year lost him strokes on Friday.

Tiger played his final 11 holes of the day in 2 under to make it respectable, but the damage had been done. Woods' proximity to the hole on Friday clocked in at just under 45 feet. There's not going to be a lot of scoring done from that average range. 

An area where he struggled last week -- on the greens -- was a boon for Woods on Friday in Round 1. Big Cat gained nearly two strokes on the field after putting a new TaylorMade blade putter in play (his third of the season), but it wasn't enough to make up for how poorly he hit the ball. At the time he finished, Woods was five back of the lead in Boston.

This has been the story of Woods' year in so many ways. On days when the flat stick is cooking, everything else runs cold. On days when he's hitting it like mid-2000s Tiger, he couldn't putt it in the Atlantic Ocean from the biggest beach on Cape Cod.

It's a frustrating way to play golf, and while it hasn't led to a high number of missed cuts because Woods has been consistently performing at a high level in at least a handful of competitions, it hasn't put him in position to win many golf tournaments, either.

Woods came into this week's second FedEx Cup Playoff event ranked No. 135 on the PGA Tour in first round scoring average. He's not setting himself up well early on in these events, and therefore he has to try and climb out of holes that are far too deep over the middle 36 holes. 

That will be the case again this week as Woods battles some poor tee-to-green play with a new weapon on the greens. If he can string both together at the same time, he'll have a chance to make a big comeback over the holiday weekend. If not, it'll be on to the next one for Woods, who is still looking for win No. 80 of his career on the PGA Tour.

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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