Alex Noren … Although he's exempt into The Genesis Invitational as a member of Europe's Ryder Cup team in 2018, he's a rarity. It's not often that a golfer on conditional status qualifies automatically for an invitational. Case in point, he's the only in his category of the Priority Ranking in the field at Riviera, while four others are committed to the Korn Ferry Tour's LECOM Suncoast Classic in Florida. Identically positioned last season, Shane Lowry proved that it's a good place to be on the road to winning The Open Championship. There's no requirement to reach the membership minimum of 15 starts, but Noren still is eligible for the FedExCup Playoffs. He's made it count early, too, by going 5-for-5 with three top-15 finishes. Because 17 of his 20 rounds have been in the 60s, he's fifth on TOUR in adjusted scoring. He's also 12th in Strokes Gained: Tee-to-Green, third in scrambling and inside the top 20 in par-3, par-4 and par-5 scoring. And for good measure, in his only prior trip to Riviera, he finished T16 in 2018.
Denny McCarthy … If we could just park him on this page every time he plays, no one would disagree; well, unless he'd appear in the Power Rankings (which he did for the Bermuda Championship and finished T15). In fact, this is the third time that he's landed here. After a T31 at Greenbrier, he placed T9 at the Shriners. Overall, he's 10-for-10 with three top 10s among five top 20s. Currently T21 on TOUR in greens in regulation, third in Strokes Gained: Putting and 25th in adjusted scoring.
Luke List … Possesses the prototypical profile to thrive at the Riv, not that he hasn't already made a little noise here throughout his career. The 35-year-old is 3-for-4 with a pair of top 20s and a scoring average of 70.14. As long as he can maintain consistent putting for four rounds, expect another decent showing. For example, in keeping his head above water on the greens at TPC Scottsdale, he didn't waste a strong effort from tee to green and finished T25.
Wyndham Clark … While loaded with talent, the learning curve still has a hold of his direction, but he's proven to sustain bursts of form for a few starts consecutively. That's why an upswing is projected to continue in his debut at Riviera. After missing two cuts in January, he connected for a T34 at the Waste Management Phoenix Open where his power and putting were on display. Then, en route to a T18 at Pebble Beach, he authored a balanced attack led by a frequency of precision on approach (T8 in GIR; averaged 13 per round) while still ranking T2 in par-5 scoring.
Joseph Bramlett … In the field as this year's recipient of the Charlie Sifford Memorial exemption. Since it was first awarded in 2009, he's the only to receive it twice. As a PGA TOUR rookie at Riviera in 2011, he missed the cut. It was his only appearance until now. Just happy to be a touring professional again after overcoming a serious back injury, there must be a persistent sense that so much of what he accomplishes is a bonus. With last week's T18 at Pebble Beach where his irons were sharp, he's recorded a pair of top 20s and sits 114th in the FedExCup.
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.