By nearly all standards, Tiger Woods has had an excellent year on the PGA tour.
By nearly all standards except his own.
Woods, of course, wants to win golf tournaments. He has done that three times this year. None of those tournaments have been majors.
But don't dismiss Woods because he has faded in the final rounds of the majors this year.
He is poised to finish the year in grand style. Not only does he have an excellent chance to make an memorable showing in the FedEx Cup playoffs, he will also get to compete in the Ryder Cup.
The FedEx Cup playoffs begin with The Barclays at Bethpage Blake Aug. 21. The top 125 golfers on the FedEx points chart qualify for that event (source: Washington Post).
After that tough New York event, the top 100 play in the Deutsche Bank Championship. Following that, the top 70 compete in the BMW Championship and then the top 30 play in the Tour Championship.
Woods should be able to make an excellent showing in the playoffs, and it could springboard him to an exceptional year in 2013.
Woods is disappointed that he didn't do better in the majors, but he should not be discouraged by his fading finishes at the U.S. Open, British Open and the PGA. Instead, he needs to feel good about the progress he made all season and how well he struck the ball most of the year.
Obviously, this was his best year since the 2009 scandal that shed light on his infidelities and cost him his marriage. His performance in 2010 and 2011 was poor, but the 2012 season was much closer to the "old" Tiger Woods.
Woods played well in the first the first two rounds of three of the four majors (all but the Masters), and he should take heart from that. If his game was not going to come back and the pressure was too much for him, he wouldn't be able to make any kind of positive showing. He would have lost it early and not even made a run in the first two rounds.
Performing well in the FedEx Cup Playoffs and coming away with the win would not guarantee that he will win next year's Masters or any of the other majors.
However, it will tell him that he can still come out on top in a competition with the best golfers in the world.
He'll get his first chance at Bethpage Black. The tournament's organizers have paired him with McIlroy for the first two rounds, so it should be a great chance for Woods to show what he can do against the top-ranked player in the world (source: Yahoo.com)
It should also be special for golf fans, who will get a chance to watch Woods and McIlroy battle hard against each other on one of the most difficult courses in the country.