Sleeper Picks: Zurich Classic of New Orleanstext sizeApril 23, 2013
By Rob Bolton: PGATOUR.COM Fantasy Columnist
Justin Hicks ... Enjoying the kind of season that epitomizes the spirit of this feature in which he's appeared three times previously. Shared 18th place at Harbour Town for his third top 25 among eight cuts made in 2013. Went 61-for-62 in putting from six feet and in. Ranks eighth in TOUR in greens in regulation, T18 in proximity to the hole, 46th in adjusted scoring and T22 in par-4 scoring average. Currently 85th in FedExCup points.
Chris Stroud ... Tied for sixth at the RBC Heritage, his first top 10 in over 13 months. Ranked 10th in strokes gained-putting and second in scrambling for the week. Went 59-for-60 on putts from six feet and in at Harbour Town. In six starts at TPC Louisiana, he's survived five cuts and posted three top 25s. Only THE PLAYERS and OHL Classic at Mayakoba rank higher in career earnings for the 31-year-old in his seventh year on the PGA TOUR.
Vaughn Taylor ... Limited to just five starts due to conditional status, he's played deep into the three in which he's survived the cut, posting top 25s in each to sit 137th in FedExCup points. No stranger to TPC Louisiana where his best finish among two cuts made in three appearances is a T26 in 2011. Would rank 44th in adjusted scoring if he had logged enough rounds to qualify for official rankings.
Matt Jones ... Fourth appearance in this feature. Four top 25s among eight cuts made in 10 starts to rank 69th in FedExCup points. Currently fourth on TOUR in total driving, T59 in greens in regulation, 29th in scrambling and T34 in adjusted scoring. With a 5-for-5 slate at TPC Louisiana that includes a pair of top 10s, he's earned more at this course than any other on the PGA TOUR.
Aaron Watkins ... In the "Deep" flight. His return trip to the PGA TOUR this season has been disappointing, with just one cut made in six starts, so he's in desperate need of a spark. TPC Louisiana is the site of his only top-10 finish in 27 career starts on the PGA TOUR. It was a T7 in his rookie year of 2009 and it accounted for nearly 77 percent of his season's earnings. In fact, it's still worth just over half of his career haul. En route to that successful appearance, he ranked seventh in strokes gained-putting and led the field in scrambling.