Harris English … Those who survive the gut check of qualifying for the FedExCup Playoffs with timely success at the Wyndham Championship – as he did with a T11 to open the 2018 Playoffs as the 124-seed – present as intriguing storylines as soon as the next season commences. The 29-year-old has responded admirably to his latest lease on PGA TOUR playing privileges. He's 7-for-7 in 2018-19, albeit with only one top-35 finish. It's a stark departure from the disappointment of last season when he missed 20 of 31 cuts, and he's in position to perform well again. He's perfect in six appearances at Torrey Pines with three top 15s, including playoff loss in 2015. Last year's T8 is his best finish in a non-additional event in his last 63 starts overall. He also comes having beaten par in his last 12 rounds, his longest such streak since he connected 20 in a row to bridge the holiday break of the 2013-14 season.
J.J. Spaun … Can't forget about this guy, especially in the event nearest his college stomping grounds at San Diego State University. The comfortable climes have been kind as he's gone T9-T23 in his pair of appearances since debuting as a PGA TOUR rookie in 2017. He arrives this week having survived 12 straight cuts since August. Four went for a top-15 finish, two of which a T3. Although he scales to just five feet, nine inches, the 28-year-old holds his own off the tee while setting the standard in terms of precision tee to green. When considering a locale for his putter to catch fire, there's no place like home.
Rory Sabbatini … The 42-year-old born in South Africa made news recently for becoming a citizen of Slovakia. However, he's made noise throughout his career at Torrey Pines. In 13 appearances since 2002, he's rattled off two top fives among seven top 25s, including a T14 in 2017. En route to last year's T20, he led the field in fairways hit and co-led in par-4 scoring. Ranked inside the top 25 in par-5 scoring in each of the last two completed seasons.
Sam Burns … Casual fans are likely to remember him bettering Tiger Woods, 68-70, in the final round of The Honda Classic last year – going bogey-free no less – to finish T8. Heck, hardcore fans will recall that rare opportunity and execution as well, but they'll also understand that it was anything but fluky. Although he doesn't qualify as a rookie by definition this season, the 22-year-old is a first-time PGA TOUR member as a Web.com Tour graduate. He ranked third in the all-around on the developmental circuit in 2018 and led in putts per GIR, putting: birdies-or-better percentage and par-3 scoring. He's fresh off a T18 at the Desert Classic where he finished T2 in fewest putts (100) and T3 in one-putt percentage. With length to give off the tee and supreme confidence with the flat stick, it's not out of the realm of consideration that he'll be smiling once again with Woods nearby at Torrey Pines.
Adam Svensson ... The PGA TOUR rookie from Canada made a wave with an opening 61 at Waialae Country Club two weeks ago. He didn't sustain the ride to finish T43, but he regrouped for a career-best T18 at the Desert Classic. Like numerous entrants in the Farmers field every year, he has experience on the South Course at Torrey Pines via the Junior World Championships. In fact, among his numerous appearances was a victory in the boys 15-17 division in 2010. Other notables in that field included Xander Schauffele (T21), Beau Hossler (T27), Brandon Stone (T27), Gavin Green (T31), recent Mauritius Open champ Kurt Kitayama (58th) and Bryson DeChambeau (MC). Experience never hurts, but positive experience isn't universal. While he hasn't flashed it enough this season to prove it, Svensson profiles as an above-average putter.
NOTE: Sleeper is a relative term, so Rob uses unofficial criteria to determine who qualifies. Each of the following usually is determined to be ineligible for this weekly staple: Winners of the tournament on the current host course; winners in the same season; recent major champions; top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking; recent participants of team competitions.