Planet Golf — 07 August 2023 by GW staff and news services
The prospects for all playoff players

Herewith, a quick primer on the players who reached the start of the three-week postseason.

1. Jon Rahm: FedExCup runner-up in 2021 has cooled only slightly since becoming this season’s only four-time winner at Masters in April.

2. Scottie Scheffler: World No. 1 and WM Phoenix Open and PLAYERS champ finished 12th or better in staggering 18 consecutive starts.

3. Rory McIlroy: Three-time FedExCup champ won twice, most recently Genesis Scottish Open, and counted as U.S. Open runner-up among 10 top-10s.

4. Max Homa: Successfully defended at Fortinet, one of two wins, and enjoyed a career season with nine top-10s. Tied for fifth in last year’s FedExCup.

5. Wyndham Clark: After a breakout season with two wins (Wells Fargo Championship, U.S. Open) is in line to make his first TOUR Championship.

6. Brian Harman: The runaway Open Championship winner also had three runner-up finishes; looks to improve on T21 in last year’s FedExCup.

7. Viktor Hovland: Winner of the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday did not miss a cut all season and finished top-20 in all four majors.

8. Keegan Bradley: Two wins included the Travelers Championship among fellow Northeast sports fans. No TOUR Championship starts since 2018.

9. Rickie Fowler: Comeback kid captured Rocket Mortgage Classic for first win in 4 1/2 years. Last man in the Playoffs last year at No. 125.

10. Tony Finau: Second two-win season (Texas Children’s Houston Open; Mexico Open at Vidanta); aiming for seventh straight TOUR Championship.

11. Jason Day: Victory at AT&T Byron Nelson was first win in five years; comeback season for former world No. 1 included eight top-10s.

12. Nick Taylor: Crowd-pleasing 70-foot winning putt at RBC Canadian Open made him the first Canadian to win it since 1954.

13. Patrick Cantlay: FedExCup champion two seasons ago has not won this season but has amassed eight top-10 finishes.

14. Tom Kim: Winner of Shriners Children’s Open went T6, T2 in last two starts; coming off ankle injury at Open Championship.

15. Sepp Straka: Late surge with John Deere win and T2 at Open Championship; Memphis was the site of 2022 playoff loss to Will Zalatoris.

16. Xander Schauffele: Two-time FedExCup runner-up has no wins, but nine top-10s and is 19-for-19 in cuts made. Won the 2017 TOUR Championship.

17. Tyrrell Hatton: Final-round 65 at THE PLAYERS to finish second, 17-for-18 in cuts made with seven top-10s. Two top-20s in the last two starts.

18. Si Woo Kim: Sony Open in Hawaii winner with consecutive 64s on the weekend, T2 at AT&T Byron Nelson with final-round 63.

19. Sam Burns: Followed a three-win season with WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play triumph. Quiet since but coming off T14 at Wyndham.

20. Russell Henley: Won at the World Wide Technology Championship in the fall and comes in hot after T2 at Wyndham. Hasn’t made it to East Lake since 2017.

21. Emiliano Grillo: Second PGA TOUR win at Charles Schwab Challenge. Hasn’t reached TOUR Championship since 2016.

22. Collin Morikawa: Runner-up finishes at Sentry, Rocket Mortgage among five top-10s, but no wins for No. 22 in both FEC and OWGR.

23. Kurt Kitayama: Won the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, T4 at PGA Championship. Seeking first TOUR Championship berth.

24. Adam Schenk: Runner-up at Valspar Championship and Charles Schwab Challenge tacked on two more top-10 finishes in the last four starts.

25. Taylor Moore: Won Valspar with final-round 67 and recorded 11 top-25 finishes. Second straight year in the Playoffs.

26. Tommy Fleetwood: Still searching for his first TOUR win, lost in a playoff at RBC Canadian Open. Top-10s in the last two starts.

27. Denny McCarthy: Tough loss in a playoff at the Memorial, but six top-10s and 21 cuts made add up to his best season on TOUR.

28. Chris Kirk: Honda victory in February was the first in nearly eight years. Was FedExCup runner-up in lone TOUR Championship start in 2014.

29. Seamus Power: Earned bulk of FedExCup points in fall with a win in Bermuda, T3 at Mayakoba and T5 at The RSM Classic.

30. Corey Conners: Won Valero Texas Open, T8 at Wells Fargo, T9 at Travelers. Looking for a third straight East Lake start.

31. Jordan Spieth: Lost playoff at RBC Heritage for best finish. Six top-10s with T3 at Valspar and T4s at Arnold Palmer and Masters.

32. Sungjae Im: Runner-up in ’22 FedExCup had seven top-10s, 21 cuts made. Needs a rally to make a fifth straight TOUR Championship.

33. Justin Rose: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am marked the first win in four years. Won FedExCup in 2018; has not played TOUR Championship since 2019.

34. Sahith Theegala: Followed great rookie year with strong sophomore season – T2 at RSM, ninth at Masters, 22 cuts made.

35. Lee Hodges: First TOUR win at 3M Open. Played first Playoffs event last year as a rookie, T13 at FedEx St. Jude Championship.

36. Matt Fitzpatrick: Beat Spieth in an epic playoff at RBC Heritage, but otherwise a relatively quiet season with four top-10s in 20 starts.

37. Adam Svensson: Maiden win at The RSM Classic in the fall was one of only three top-10s, including T7 at Wyndham Championship.

38. Byeong Hun An: With T3 at Genesis Scottish Open, T2 at Wyndham, is trending and back in Playoffs for first time since 2020.

39. Brendon Todd: Closest calls came via T2 at AT&T Pebble Beach (final-round 65) and John Deere; comes in hot after T7 at Wyndham.

40. Eric Cole: Impressed with a playoff loss at The Honda Classic; tied fifth at Mexico Open at Vidanta, in the mix for Rookie of the Year.

41. Andrew Putnam: Four top-10s, T2 at ZOZO with second-round 62. Fifth Playoffs appearance in the last six seasons.

42. Patrick Rodgers: Veteran still looking for first TOUR win, lost in a playoff at Barracuda. Has made Playoffs in six of the last seven seasons.

43. Harris English: Tied second at Arnold Palmer, T8 at U.S. Open. Healthy after making just 12 starts due to injury last season.

44. Adam Hadwin: Second at Zurich Classic of New Orleans with Nick Taylor. Lost the Rocket Mortgage playoff, three straight MCs since.

45. Tom Hoge: Tied third at THE PLAYERS with course-record 62 in the second round; T3 at Sentry TOC with final-round 64.

46. Mackenzie Hughes: Claimed Sanderson Farms for second TOUR win, advanced to quarterfinals of WGC-Dell Match Play.

47. Cameron Young: Reigning PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year lost in the Championship Match of WGC-Dell Match Play, made 17 of 20 cuts.

48. J.T. Poston: Late-season Playoffs push came via T6 at John Deere, T6 at Genesis Scottish Open, T2 at 3M Open, T7 Wyndham.

49. Lucas Glover: Premier ball-striker has figured out the putting as evidenced by low-stress Wyndham win over the weekend.

50. Nick Hardy: Won Zurich Classic of New Orleans (with teammate Davis Riley) to help qualify for the Playoffs for the first time.

51. Alex Smalley: Second straight Playoffs appearance after T2 at John Deere, 10 top-25s; two MCs in last two starts.

52. Thomas Detry: Another rookie, had four top-15s in fall, including runner-up in Bermuda, to get off to a hot start. Made 19 cuts.

53. Taylor Montgomery: Rookie had five top-15 finishes in his first five starts in the fall but has cooled with four missed cuts in the last four starts.

54. Davis Riley: Nabbed first PGA TOUR win at Zurich with Nick Hardy but hasn’t finished in the top 30 since April.

55. Brandon Wu: Second straight trip to Playoffs – T2 at Pebble Beach, third at Mexico Open highlight the season.

56. Hayden Buckley: Second at Sony in January, two top-10s in April, second straight Playoffs appearance. Out since June (rib injury).

57. Hideki Matsuyama: Only two top-10s, none since fifth at THE PLAYERS. His 10th straight Playoffs start, but worst starting position.

58. Keith Mitchell: Eight top-25s including T4 at Pebble Beach, T5 at 3M in most recent start. Sixth straight year making Playoffs.

59. Mark Hubbard: After a decent fall, struggled in spring, but rebounded with four top-10s in the last nine starts to earn third Playoffs berth.

60. Matt Kuchar: The streak lives! Has made Playoffs every year since the inception of FedExCup in ’07. That’s 17 straight.

61. Stephan Jaeger: A cut-making machine this season, reaching weekend rounds in 25 of 28 starts, with eight top-25s.

62. Cam Davis: T6 at THE PLAYERS broke a streak of five missed cuts; finished strong with T10 at 3M Open and T7 at Wyndham.

63. Sam Ryder: Has finished season between 100-125 in FedExCup for five straight seasons; T7 at recent 3M Open one of four top-10s.

64. Sam Stevens: Tied third at Corales Puntacana and second at Valero Texas Open in consecutive weeks. Made 17 cuts all season.

65. Aaron Rai: Late-season surge included T3 RBC Canadian Open, T24 Travelers, T9 Rocket Mortgage, T20 3M Open.

66. Beau Hossler: Finished strong with T6 Barracuda, T13 3M Open; third at Zurich, with Wyndham Clark, was also helpful.

67. Matt NeSmith: Roared out of the gates with three top-10s, including T2 at Shriners Children’s Open, to start the season.

68. Vincent Norrman: TOUR rookie from Sweden proved he belongs with a playoff victory at Barbasol Championship in July.

69. J.J. Spaun: Steady if unspectacular season saw him make 19 cuts in 26 starts, with three top-10s, his best a T5 at Sentry.

70. Ben Griffin: TOUR rookie squeaked through with one top-10 all season, a T3 at Butterfield Bermuda Championship.

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