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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Woods won the Tour Championship in 2018 and he won the Masters in 2019, which meant there was plenty of reason to be excited about 2020, but after an early-season win in October, nothing really panned out for Woods as he was unable to sustain any momentum through the disjointed season. While Woods was once on of the easiest guys to project, he's now nearly impossible to predict. The variables in-play for Woods are like any other, including age, health, and an incredible upside. At this point, all you can do is project a healthy season and if that's the case, he should improve enough upon his cap number from this past year.
When looking at Woods' season-long performance, you might say that it wasn't a great year, after all, he had only one top-10 from the middle of April through the end of the season, but it's what he did earlier in April that made this season a success. Woods captured his 15th major title and added another Green Jacket to his collections when he won the Masters in April. After that, well, it was a train wreck the rest of the way, but it certainly doesn't take away from what he accomplished at Augusta. His play and more importantly, his health were a concern the rest of the season and it will be tough to just forget all that occurred over the final four months of the season. It appears as though Woods still has a run or two in him each season, but his upside is limited. As such, even at this reasonable number, he's not a good salary cap option this season.
The long and winding road lead to a victory at the Tour Championship last season. Perhaps it was apropos that Tiger would wait until the final event to finally get back into the winner's circle. Unlike his previous comebacks, this one was predicated on patience and nothing was to be rushed, not even winning apparently. Now that the seal is broken, this phenomenon could go in a couple directions. Tiger could continue to improve and be a factor at every major, possibly winning one or two this season or he could perform near the level that he did last season. There is a third path, one in which Tiger regresses is possible as well, but not likely. Tiger has it figured out again, whether that means he can win at a high-level again is unknown, but at this point, only an injury will send him down the third path.
Woods returns after more than a year off, and it's impossible to predict what lies ahead for him, even whether he'll remain healthy. We'll say he'll be healthier than last year, but that's not telling you much. Not predicting a W or anything close to it, without evidence, but we surely expect some Sunday excitement here and there.
Not much needs to be said here. The odds that Woods will one day reclaim his throne as the best golfer on the planet are shrinking by the year, but he's by no means past the days when he can dominate from time to time. He's only a year removed from a five win season. It goes without saying that he's a "must-have" in salary cap leagues this season. As for drafts, if he's healthy entering the season, he's a first-round pick.
By any other measuring stick than the one we have for Tiger, 2013 was a great season. Five wins and over $8 million in earnings and yet there was still something missing -- a major. He'll get that elusive major in 2014, but as for matching the other numbers, that might prove more difficult. He's still the top pick in a draft format, but tough to pull the trigger on him in a salary cap format.
It's been awhile since Tiger finished near the top of the money list, but after a very nice year that saw him pick up three more wins, he's back where he belongs. Where does he go from here, though? Does the ascent continue? Does he stall? Does he fall back? The easy answer is that he'll pick up another few wins this year, but that he won't improve on last year's results. That, however, isn't how Tiger operates. Yes, he did have his struggles last year and, no, he's not 2001-Tiger, but he's been in the mix at the majors and it's only a matter of time before he gets another one. His next major win should come in 2013, and it's not out of the question that he can improve upon his 2012 earnings. That said, he's a very risky pick in salary cap leagues as his upside is limited when looking at his cost for this season. In draft leagues, he should go right behind McIlroy.
It took him until December, but Woods finally won again. It looks like he's ready to compete once again, too. Woods' first win since the meltdown took longer than expected, but like the previous two times that he changed his swing, he could come back with ferocity. Woods should again find his way back into the Top-30 after falling out of the Top 125 last season and be a factor during a couple majors this season.
There's little left to be said about the personal drama that surrounded Woods throughout the 2010 season, so it's best to look ahead. Fact is, there is no justification for passing on Woods in a salary cap league. The risk of doing so is far too high as everyone else in your league will have him on their rosters. As for his prospects in 2011. Don't expect talk of a grand slam this season, but Tiger should find a bit of his old form this season and win a major and a handful of other events. Other than due to his personal life, which seems to be settling down, why would he not perform at or near his previous level? It was well documented that Woods struggled with accuracy off the tee last year, but that was nothing new. That part of his game has always been an issue. What's not an issue is his performance in the other three core measures where he consistently ranks among the best on the PGA TOUR.
The yearly dilemma concerning Tiger Woods is not a problem this season. The dilemma entering each season is usually this: can Tiger possibly improve on his numbers from the previous year? Considering he earned more than $10 million last season, that conversation is not necessary. Could he earn more this season? Sure, but not enough to make him a worthy selection in a salary cap league. In standard draft leagues, Woods is still clearly the No. 1 pick considering he is showing no signs of slowing down. There's an excellent chance Woods will break his major championship "drought" this season since he almost certainly will at some point, and he should have no trouble approaching the 10-win mark if he stays healthy. As of the end of 2009 Woods remains #1 in the Official World Golf Rankings.
Tiger Woods will have his biggest impact on fantasy golf this season. The reason is no one knows when he's coming back.If he comes back in March, he's an absolute steal at $5.7 million and the No. 1 pick in draft leagues. If he comes back for the Masters, he's still a good pick in a salary cap league, but probably not the top pick in a draft. If he comes back after the Masters, he's a poor salary cap selection, and a late first-round, early second-round pick. Remember that it's not only when he comes back, but how he comes back. Rust could be a factor, and a slow start could make it difficult to earn more than $6 million this season.
In any type of league other than a salary cap league, there is no better pick in all of fantasy sports than Tiger Woods. He's guaranteed to be at or near the top of the money list each and every year. The only things that have slowed him down to this points are swing changes and life altering events. Unless you think one of those two are going to happen in 2008, he's the top pick. For those in salary cap leagues, it's not quite as simple as that. The main factor in a salary cap league is earnings improvement. In this case, there's just not much room to improve. Unless he wins nearly every event he plays in, it will be hard to significantly improve upon his 2007 earnings. Woods had left knee arthroscopic surgery in mid-April and is expected to be out of action for six to eight weeks. On June 18, three days after winning the U. S. Open, Woods shut down for the balance of the 2008 season to undergo ACL surgery (Anterior cruciate ligament) as well as corrective action to resolve stress fractures in the left tibia. The tibia runs from the knee to the ankle. Woods had the above mentioned surgery on June 24. There's no change in expected date of return, April 2009.
The only question remaining with Woods is how high is the ceiling? For one reason or another he seems to top out at around $10 million in earnings and two to three majors. Is that really the ceiling, though? Last season could have been different if his father hadn't passed away, but remember he had already failed to win the Masters. There's no question that Woods strives to win the Grand Slam each year. To this point, however, something always gets it the way. As for 2007, it would only make sense that he puts up similar numbers to 2006 considering he should be around the entire season. Anything better than what he accomplished last year might be too much to expect, though. Still a no-brainer No. 1 pick in conventional drafts.
Tiger Woods did about all he could in 2005. The only thing left to accomplish is the Grand Slam. Even if he were to complete the Grand Slam, he likely couldn't earn much more than the $10.6 million he earned last year. Woods will be a difficult selection in most salary cap leagues. For example, if in leagues with a $12 million cap, drafting Woods leaves little room for anyone else. Ask yourself, "Will Tiger do better in 2006 than he did in 2005?" He could, but "much better" is doubtful, and when selecting your team, you should look for players who can do much better this season. In a regular draft setting, Woods is the easy number one pick.
Woods is still #1 on all draft lists despite his major-less 2003 season. Woods won the Player of the Year title last season while having an "off" year. Woods won five times and had 12 Top Ten finishes, however he only managed to reach the Top Ten once in the Majors. That might be the most incredible stat from his 2003 season. The fact that he won 5 times, won the Player of the Year, and did not play well in the Majors makes one think he will improve upon his 2003 numbers. Woods should play well in the Majors and get his customary five to seven wins. If he can do that, he will earn more money than last year and reclaim the money title.
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