Masters 2021: Daily Fantasy Picks and Tips for Thursday

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IApril 8, 2021

Masters 2021: Daily Fantasy Picks and Tips for Thursday

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    At the end of the first round of the 2020 Masters Tournament, Dustin Johnson was in a three-way tie for first place at seven under par. He went on to dominate the rest of the weekend, remaining at the top of the leaderboard and finishing 20 under to win his first career green jacket.

    The 2021 Masters is going to be a bit different, though. The tournament is taking place in April as usual after last year's event took place in November because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    It's beneficial to get off to a strong start at Augusta National Golf Club, which is what the 88 golfers in the 2021 field will be looking to do when the Masters get underway Thursday. That includes Johnson, who will be looking to become the first golfer to win the tournament in back-to-back years since Tiger Woods in 2001 and 2002.

    With the Masters set to begin, here's some daily fantasy advice for Thursday's opening round, with all DFS prices courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Pay the High Price to Build Around Johnson

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    It's going to cost a lot to get Johnson ($11,500) in your lineup. In fact, he has the highest price of any golfer in this year's field heading into the opening round.

    But there's a reason for that: Johnson has dominated at Augusta National in recent years, even before winning his first Masters title. He finished second the year before, and he's ended up in the top 10 in each of his past five appearances in the tournament.

    Not only that, but Johnson has been getting off to strong starts once he arrives at the Masters. Since 2013, he's shot a 70 or better in the first round in four of his seven appearances at the tournament. He shot a 68 to open the 2019 event, and he followed that up by starting with a 65 last year, his best career score in a Masters round (which he then matched in the third round).

    After a dominant 2020, Johnson hasn't fared quite as well in recent tournaments, a stretch that includes tying for 48th at the Players Championship in March. But if there's any course where Johnson can get back on track, it's Augusta National. Build your DFS lineup around the No. 1 golfer in the world.

Ancer Should Be One of the Best Value Plays

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    Eric Gay/Associated Press

    Abraham Ancer arrived at Augusta National in November for his Masters debut, and he immediately showed that he was capable of producing impressive results at the course. He opened the tournament with scores of 68, 67 and 69 in the first three rounds, which had him in a three-way tie for second heading into the final day.

    Although Ancer ended up falling to 13th after he shot a 76 in the final round, it was an impressive showing for somebody who had never before competed at this marquee event. Now that the 30-year-old has a better feel for the course, perhaps he will have a more complete performance at the 2021 Masters.

    Ancer ($7,400) comes at an affordable price for DFS lineups, which could make him one of the best value plays Thursday considering he opened the 2020 Masters with a 68. A similar round Thursday would provide a huge boost for daily fantasy players who put him in their lineups.

    In his past six tournaments, Ancer has finished 23rd or better in all but one. Even if he doesn't play quite as well at the Masters as he did early last year, he should at least be a stroke or two under par after the opening round, so he should be a low-risk, high-reward DFS play.

Wallace Could Be Sleeper Play to Consider

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    Matt Slocum/Associated Press

    Matt Wallace has made only two previous appearances at the Masters, and he didn't fare great either time. He missed the cut in 2019 and tied for 46th last year. But there's a solid chance that the 30-year-old will do better this time at Augusta National.

    Wallace enjoyed a third-place finish at the recent Valero Texas Open, posting scores of 69, 68, 67 and 70. Not only was it his best performance of 2021, but it was also a great way to tune up for the Masters and build some momentum heading into the first major tournament of the year.

    Wallace ($6,400) has a low DFS price heading into Thursday's opening round, which could make him a great sleeper play. And although he hasn't had great finishes at the Masters, he opened last year's tournament with a 69, so he knows what it takes to get off to a strong start.

    Expect Wallace to have another impressive opening round at Augusta, and make sure to capitalize on that in daily fantasy, as he has the potential to be a Thursday difference-maker.


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