The World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational takes place a week before the PGA Championship, and several golfers are using it as a tune-up for the major championship. One of those players is Jon Rahm, the new No. 1 golfer in the Official World Golf Rankings.
Rahm supplanted Rory McIlroy after his victory at the Memorial Tournament. The Spaniard told reporters on Tuesday that the top ranking isn’t just a byproduct of him winning one tournament.
“Being No. 1 in the world is a great thing,” Rahm said. “It’s a consequence of playing good golf throughout the last four years, not only last week. And it’s something special to win that event last week, right. One of the strongest fields for a PGA Tour event, tough conditions, being Jack’s event, being throughout this time, it just made it a special week.”
Odds to Win the FedEx St. Jude Invitational
Justin Thomas, who has been No. 1 in the past, said Rahm will face added pressure now that he holds the title of being the world’s top golfer.
“I just remember being a little more nervous that week because it’s like, you know, all eyes are on you and you’re the best player in the world,” Thomas said. “So you feel like you should kind of play up to that. But he’s (Rahm) done well with pressure and nerves in the past, so I’m sure he’ll be just fine.”
Will Rahm be able to win his second tournament of the year, or will another golfer prevail? We take a look at some of the golfers that should do well at the FedEx St. Jude Invitational, and others who might struggle this week.
Golfers to Consider
Webb Simpson (22/1)
Simpson has been a model of consistency, and that should continue this week at the FedEx St. Jude Invitational. Simpson finished second here last year. He’s got a victory and a tie for eighth at two other tournaments this year.
Tyrrell Hatton (22/1)
Hatton has been sniffing victory in his last two events. He finished tied for third at the RBC Classic, and tied for fourth at the Rocket Mortgage Classic. Another huge reason to back him is that he’s the best putter on tour right now.
Golfers to Avoid
Jon Rahm (10/1)
There are a couple of reasons to stay away from Rahm. The first is his new designation as the No. 1 ranked golfer. That pressure will eat at most golfers, and Rahm probably won’t be an exception. He did finish seventh here last year, but at 10/1, he’s not worth the bet.
Rory McIlroy (11/1)
We are going to keep picking against McIlroy until he proves us wrong. So far, however, he hasn’t done that. He has no top 10s since the restart, and even though he finished fourth at the FedEx St. Jude Invitational last year, we aren’t going anywhere near him.