Expert Picks: John Deere Classic

July 10, 2012
PGA TOUR staff

The PGA TOUR travels to TPC Deere Run for the John Deere Classic. Here's how the PGATOUR.COM experts sized up the top contenders:

How it works: Our experts from PGATOUR.COM select the player they think will win this week's event. By using a draft process, no two picks can be the same. The player who wins the previous week picks last the following week.
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SLEEPER PICKS: Who will surprise at TPC Deere Run?
Expert picks: John Deere Classic
Pick orderPlayer selected
STEVE STRICKER. Obviously a no-brainer at TPC Deere Run, where he is three-time defending champ. Stricker's game is rounding back into form after solid showings at the U.S. Open and The Greenbrier. Broke 70 all four rounds last week.
JEFF OVERTON. Before everyone jumps on me, let me explain. Well, let Overton explain. On Twitter last week, the Indiana University alum tweeted that he had never hit it so well as he did at the Greenbrier Classic. He has four top-20 finishes in his last five starts.
If Balionis had the top pick ... Stricker
ZACH JOHNSON. If Stricker doesn't win (and eventually he won't ... I think), then this fellow Midwesterner will. He has a T3 and T2 during the Stricker Era, and is due after three poor starts following his win at Crowne Plaza.
If Schwarb had the top pick ... Johnson
RYAN PALMER. His track record in this event is a bit spotty, but his recent play suggests he's due for a win. In his last six starts, he has five finishes inside the top 15. I'm worried about his accuracy off the tee -- he's 144th on TOUR -- but he will be in contention.
If McAllister had the top pick ... Stricker
TIM CLARK. The 2010 THE PLAYERS champion seems to have finally overcome the tendinitis in his elbow that plagued him for a year. The South African has never been out of the top 20 in the Quad Cities, and lost here in a playoff in 2007.
If Swantek had the top pick ... Stricker
KYLE STANLEY. Stanley has all the tools to make some noise. After a rough stretch, he had a T22 at AT&T National and may have won last year if not for an incredible fairway bunker shot from Steve Stricker.
If Cooney had the top pick ... Stricker
SEAN O'HAIR. I think some people forgot he was in the field. That's OK. He's trending up -- solid T7 last week -- and he's back at TPC Deere Run for the first time in years. His win here in 2005 launched his career. Turns 30 Wednesday.
If Smithson had the top pick ... Johnson
JOHN SENDEN. He won there in 2006 and tied for 12th in 2010. Senden has had a solid season with four top 10s, including a tie for 10th at the U.S. Open, which was his last start on the PGA TOUR. He's also 10th on TOUR in birdie average.
If Wacker had the top pick ... Johnson
JONATHAN BYRD. The John Deere Classic hasn't been a great stop for him since his win in 2007, but he's having a stellar season with five top-10s so far this year. This could be the week he gets his first win of 2012.
If Szeker had the top pick ... Stricker
BRENDON DE JONGE. He keeps putting his name on the leaderboard, and TPC Deere Run has been a track for him. I refuse to give up on him, and he's going to put all four together someday.
If Dunham had the top pick ... Stricker
CARL PETTERSSON. He's coming off a tie for 17th at The Greenbrier Classic and two weeks away from his title defense in Canada. Not to mention, the Swede already has a win and two seconds this year.
If Ross had the top pick ... Stricker
Standings after 27 events
LAST WEEK: Tough week of missed cuts for a lot of the experts at The Greenbrier. Helen Ross picked up the most points with Webb Simpson, who cost her a victory with his 73 on Sunday.
Position Name Wins Top-5s Top-10s Top-25s MCs FedExCup points
1 Ryan Smithson
Site Producer
4 10 11 18 2 3336.00
2 Lauren Deason
Editorial Coordinator
3 5 8 15 3 2695.49
3 Amanda Balionis
Host, PGA TOUR Today
1 6 12 15 8 2084.75
4 John Swantek
Host, On The Tee
1 4 10 12 8 1872.90
5 Brian Wacker
Site Producer
2 4 5 10 5 1836.59
6 Chris Dunham
Editorial Coordinator
1 3 5 14 3 1631.24
7 Mike McAllister
Managing Editor
1 3 5 12 5 1628.35
8 Helen Ross
Chief of Correspondents
0 4 5 13 6 1619.20
9 Anne Szeker
Site Producer
0 2 9 15 1 1349.33
10 John Schwarb
Site Producer
0 3 4 12 5 1184.15
11 *Bill Cooney
Site Producer
1 1 2 3 2 690
*First event in Week 19 at HP Byron Nelson Championship

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