What a difference a week makes.  Muirfield played like two completely difference courses over the last two weeks from wet and soft conditions to windy and lightning quick conditions.  Players who looked great two weeks ago looked like 15 handicaps this past week.  I am still in shock at the amount of rounds in the 80s there were.  Good to see Jon Rahm get out of his little funk since returning from the hiatus to become the new number one player in the world.  He only needs to stay there for another 682 weeks to tie Tiger’s record of longest run at number one. 

The PGA Tour returns to Blaine, Minnesota for the second edition of the 3M Open.  This course was pretty new to a lot of PGA Tour players but from 2001-2018 TPC Twin Cities hosted the PGA Tour Champions.  Despite the PGA Tour bringing in former number one player in the world with 35 professional victories and a major win under his belt, Tom Lehman to make the course more challenging for these young stars, we still saw fireworks last 4th of July weekend at the inaugural event when Matt Wolff got his first career victory shooting 21 under par.  He beat out Bryson DeChambeau and Collin Morikawa to take the championship.  The field this week lessens a bit from last week’s Memorial.  We’ve still got the likes of Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Tony Finau, Paul Casey, Bubba Watson and the return of Tommy Fleetwood to the PGA Tour.  I fully expect another shootout in Minnesota this weekend.    

TPC Twin Cities is a Par 71 that stretches out 7,468 yards.  The fairways are relatively narrow and the rough is pretty standard for a PGA Tour event but there are two things you’ve got to avoid to keep your scores low on this course; water and sand.  There are 27 water hazards and 72 sand traps around this course.  The course also features two drive-able par 4s which the bombers can take full advantage of this week.  Plenty of opportunities to go low. 

We are looking for birdie makers this weekend.  We want guys who can go low and do it over four straight days.  Once again we’ve got a course that features seven Par 4s in the 440-500 range and you know I’ll be looking at players’ efficiency from that range once again.  I’ll also take a closer look at Par 4s birdie or better because of the importance of scoring on these Par 4s.  I’m also looking at Strokes Gained: Approach like I do every week because they can’t give yourself birdie opportunities without getting the ball in good positions upon approach.  Strokes Gained: Off the Tee isn’t something I use often but on a course where you need to score on Par 4s and only a couple Par 5s, it’s important to start the hole off right.   

KEY STATS TO TARGET: Par 4 Efficiency 450-500, Par 4 Birdie or Better, Strokes Gained: Approach, Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, and Greens in Regulation.