A $6 million prize pool is up for grabs this weekend as the 2019 John Deere Classic tees off from TPC Deere Run in Silvis Illinois.
Now celebrating its 46th-year on Tour, Matthew Wolff headlines the top chances as he hopes to claim back-to-back victories after last week’s thrilling win at the 3M Open.
Australians have won this event twice in the past, but they have their work cut out for them with a handful of talented young Americans favoured to win.
We’ve broken down all the top chances ahead of Thursday’s opening round, so be sure to read our complete 2019 John Deere Classic Preview below.
2019 John Deere Classic Best Bet
Matthew Wolff – $26.00
It doesn’t get much better than a 26-foot walk-off eagle to win your first ever PGA event. The 20-year-old became the second-youngest winner on Tour in 80-years at last week’s 3M Open, and with momentum and a red-hot putter on his side, it’s worth backing Wolff and his flawless swing to do the talking.
2019 John Deere Classic Top 5 Finish
Joaquin Niemann – $6.00
Entered as one of the top chances in Minnesota last week and looked a serious chance before a final round 70 earned him a T23 finish. Even so, Niemann still looks right on the verge of victory after back-to-back T5’s at the Travelers and Rocket Mortgage Classic. Niemann finished T23 at this event last year, so course familiarity is in his favour.
2019 John Deere Classic Top 10 Finish
Sungjae Im – $3.60
The Korean is on a roll since finishing outright seventh at last month’s Canadian Open. Im found himself back inside the Top 20 at TPC Twin Cities last week and continues to card impressive rounds under 60.
2019 John Deere Classic Field
Collin Morikawa – $19.00
The 22-year-old earned his first Top 5 finish on Tour last week tieing for second at the 3M Open. Morikawa tied for first in birdies made and came agonizingly close to forcing a playoff with overall winner Matt Wolff. The Los Angeles native quietly finished inside the Top 50 at last month’s US Open, making him not only a name to watch this weekend but one to watch going forward.
Viktor Hovland – $19.00
The Norwegian owns back-to-back Top 20 finishes after a second-straight T13 at TPC Twin Cities last week. Hovland is still in his rookie year as a pro but ranked second off-the-tee in Minnesota last week. That accuracy should come in handy on the tricky par-3 16 at TPC Deere Run.
Lucas Glover – $26.00
Glover tied for seventh at TPC Twin Cities last week – his first finish inside the Top 10 since March. The three-time Tour winner led the way in Putting: Birdies or Better, and now returns to the John Deere Classic hoping to improve on his T25 in 2017 following last year’s absence.
Brian Harman – $29.00
Made up for a disappointing performance at the Rocket Mortgage a fortnight ago with a T7 in Minnesota last week. Harman won the John Deere Classic in 2014 and with a pair of Top 10 finishes in two of his last three events, looks a strong chance to challenge the favourites.
Charles Howell III – $29.00
Howell seems to have turned a corner after a rough two-month stretch. The Tour veteran bounced back last week with a T23 at TPC Twin Cities – his first finish inside the Top 30 since March. Despite a rough year, the 40-year-old ranks ninth in the PGA’s around-the-green rating.
Kevin Streelman – $29.00
Looks a little over the odds at this price after falling outside the Top 30 in his last two tournaments. It was only a month ago Streelman finished fourth at the Memorial, however, and with four Top 10 finishes this year, you can never count out the 16-year pro.
Wyndham Clark – $46.00
Locked in for a T5 at TPC Twin Cities last week, his first Top 5 finish of the year. Clark has missed the cut five times over the last two months but still ranks seventh in putting. Would take something special to win, but a finish inside the Top 25 isn’t out of the question.
Troy Merritt – $67.00
Made some big putts last week in Minnesota on the way to a well-earned T7. Merritt is yet to crack the winners’ circle since turning pro in 2010 but could surprise this weekend if he can string together four consistent rounds.