US Open Golf 2021: Daily Fantasy Picks and Tips for Thursday

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IJune 17, 2021

US Open Golf 2021: Daily Fantasy Picks and Tips for Thursday

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    Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    The 2021 U.S. Open will get underway on Thursday, and there should be enthralling action right from the start at Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego. It's only the second time that the course has hosted this event and the first time since 2008.

    Jon Rahm is the early favorite to win this year, but there are plenty of others who could end up claiming the third major tournament of 2021.

    Nobody will win the title in the opening round, but it is important to avoid a bad start. Who will live up to expectations and who may fall short? We're about to find out.

    With Thursday's opening round about to get underway, here's some daily fantasy advice for the first day of the 2021 U.S. Open.

    (All DFS prices via DraftKings.)

Rahm the Best Option Among High-Price Golfers

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    Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    Looking to save a few bucks of your DFS budget by playing a top-tier player other than Jon Rahm? Don't even think about it.

    While others such as Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson could be strong plays, the Spaniard is a reliable option worth the high price of playing him ($11,200).

    Rahm has never won a major, but this could be his best opportunity yet to do so. He has impressed at Torrey Pines in recent years, including a first PGA Tour victory in the 2017 Farmers Insurance Open.

    Heading into the U.S. Open, the 26-year-old has been playing well. He placed fifth in The Masters in April, eighth in last month's PGA Championship and had a six-stroke lead at the Memorial Tournament two weekends ago before being forced to withdraw due to a positive COVID-19 test.

    So, when filling out your DFS lineup, start by putting in Rahm and building around him. There's a strong chance he could be atop the leaderboard after the first round, or at least very close to it.

Finau Should Provide a Ton of Value

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    Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    Tony Finau has played in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines each of the past seven years, and he keeps getting better. He's finished in the top six at the event in four of the past five years, and he placed second in the tournament in January with three rounds in the 60s.

    That success at the course isn't the only reason to think the 31-year-old could be a contender at the U.S. Open this weekend, though. He appears to be on the verge of winning a first major tournament, after nine top-10 finishes in his past 13 appearances at majors.

    Finau ($8,900) should be a great mid-tier DFS option for the first round, because he's likely to get off to a strong start and play consistently well throughout the tournament. He's shot a 70 or better in the opening round of his past four Farmers Insurance Open showings, so he's likely to begin on a high note once again.

    Considering all these factors, he should be a steal in daily fantasy at this price, which may increase throughout the weekend. So, don't miss out on playing Finau at this affordable cost now.

Kokrak a Strong Option at a Lower Cost

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    Michael Ainsworth/Associated Press

    Despite being 36, Jason Kokrak doesn't have a ton of experience at major tournaments. However, his best showing in one came at last year's U.S. Open, where he tied for 17th. So, perhaps that's a sign of better things to come for him moving forward.

    Plus, Torrey Pines is a course that he has fared well at in recent years. He's finished 29th or better in the Farmers Insurance Open four of the past five years, which included a 20th-place showing in 2019. He has also shot a 71 or better in the opening round in each of the past three years.

    Kokrak ($7,600) may not be the biggest name in the field, but he's a player who could end up coming through as a sleeper in the opening round of this year's U.S. Open. Whether he can keep up his solid play throughout the weekend remains to be seen.

    Expect the Canadian to play well Thursday at least, though, which makes him a strong DFS option at an affordable price.

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