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FedEx Cup Standings 2013: Breaking Down Playoff's Biggest Title Hopefuls

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FedEx Cup Standings 2013: Breaking Down Playoff's Biggest Title Hopefuls
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

When the FedEx Cup was devised, this has to be the kind of scenario officials envisioned. Midway through the second event of the four-tournament playoff, the top of the standings are filled with golf's biggest stars.

Tiger Woods leads the way, and is closely followed by Adam Scott. In third, a little further back but well withing striking distance, sits Phil Mickelson.

These three heavyweights, who are also the leading contenders for Player of the Year honors, are followed by a string of accomplished golfers, but I'll be surprised if one of the aforementioned three doesn't take the top spot.

Take a look at the leaderboard, and then I'll dig deeper into Scott, Mickelson and Woods:  

View the full standings at CBSSports.com.

2013 FedEx Cup Standings
Rank Player Top-10s Wins Points
1 Tiger Woods 8 5 4,009
2 Adam Scott 6 2 3,847
3 Phil Mickelson 7 2 2,624
4 Matt Kuchar 7 2 2,540
5 Justin Rose 6 1 2,397
6 Brandt Snedeker 8 2 2,218
7 Graham Delaet 6 0 1,806
8 Bill Haas 9 1 1,718
9 Jordan Spieth 7 1 1,683
10 Gary Woodland 2 1 1,633

 

Adam Scott

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

On the strength of his win at the Barclays, Scott was able to close the gap on Woods. However, the 33-year-old Australian looked like he was going to throw all that hard work away with an awful first round at the Deutsche Bank Championship by firing a 73. 

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Undeterred, Scott immediately turned it around by firing five-under 66 on Saturday to move to three-under for the tournament. 

He is still 10 strokes off the lead and tied for 53rd place, but at least he has his game moving in the right direction. With continued solid play, Scott can atone for his bad round and he can easily still win the Cup. 

But he is looking up the leaderboard to our next two golfers.

 

Phil Mickelson

Jim Rogash/Getty Images

For much of Saturday, Mickelson was showing all signs of slowing down. Entering the day as the co-leader following an excellent eight-under Round 1, Lefty turned in a solid front nine. 

He was two over on that side, but he lost his game off the tee on the turn. Mickelson was launching tee shots off the back in every direction but straight. He had to pull off shots like this unbelievable chip on No. 11 just to keep his head above water. 

Mickelson battled to turn things around and drilled two birdies to close his round. He finished the day at even-par to sit at eight-under for the tournament. 

His bad stretch will prove to be a blip on the radar. Lefty has been playing far too well for anything else to happen, and he knows it: 

All of this sets up for what very well could be the greatest showdown we have seen between Woods and Mickelson. 

 

Tiger Woods

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

On the strength of his wonderful five-win season, Woods entered the FedEx Cup playoffs with a nice lead. However, during the final round of the Barclays, that lead looked like it was going to be all for naught: 

GIF Credit: Bleacher Report

There is no quicker path to a golfer's undoing than back issues, and with Woods struggling with that troublesome part of his body, his chances of winning the FedEx Cup seemed to be fading. 

However, Woods was able to hold it together at the Barclays and was one revolution of the ball away on the 18th green from forcing a playoff. 

Now, he is showing no sign of the back issues that plagued him last week. 

Woods is having a rock solid tournament this week. On Saturday, he climbed up the leaderboard with a 67 to push him to seven-under for the week. He is tied for 20th. 

With Woods dialing in his game, he can still easily take this tournament, and even if he doesn't, he could still win the Cup. 

As long as Woods' back holds up, he is going to be very tough to surpass. 

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