Commentary

Expert picks for the John Deere Classic

Updated: July 11, 2017, 12:23 PM ET
By ESPN.com contributors

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY SportsKelly Kraft has a history of playing well at TPC Deere Run and shot below 70 in all four rounds last week at The Greenbrier Classic.

Following a high-scoring week at the Greenbrier Classic, the PGA Tour heads to Illinois for an even higher scoring event -- the John Deere Classic. Zach Johnson and Steve Stricker are always two favorites at this event, but there are plenty of other golfers to consider for your lineups this week.

Our panel of ESPN and FantasyGolfInsider experts have laid out the players whom they believe have the skills to succeed and provide big fantasy-point totals.


Picks to win

Steve Stricker

At 50 years old, he's proved he still has plenty of game -- and a title contention wouldn't exactly be unprecedented. One week after last year's Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III contended for three days at the Greenbrier, don't be surprised to see the current Presidents Cup captain get into the mix on a course where he's won before. -- Jason Sobel

Zach Johnson

The two-time major winner has "only" won the John Deere Classic once, but since 2010 his average finish is between seventh and eighth place. The outlier was a T-34 in 2016, but don't be surprised if Johnson posts his first top-10 since March this week in Silvis, Illinois. -- Kevin Maguire

Chad Campbell

Not only is Campbell playing his best golf of the season, making four of five cuts including a T-13 at the AT&T Byron Nelson, T-10 at the St. Jude Classic and a T-9 last week at Greenbrier, he also has a history of playing well at this event. In fact, Campbell has made the cut in each of his past five appearances at the John Deere Classic. -- Joe Kaiser

DraftKings value picks

Kelly Kraft

I may be a week late on Kraft as he jumped up the leaderboard last week, but I'm thinking that the putting could still get better than it was last week (where he was putrid on the greens). Kraft was on fire in every other facet of his game, but the putter is what held him back from earning his first career PGA Tour victory. -- Taras Pitra

Johnson Wagner

When I think of the John Deere Classic, I think of a lot of lawn tractors, a ton of scoring and Johnson Wagner. Each of the past three years, Wagner has been on the leaderboard late on Sunday and finished T-7, T-5 and T-5. After a brutal start to the year, he has made two of his last three cuts including a T-5 at the Quicken Loans two weeks ago. When you are watching Wagner on Sunday afternoon you will be thinking, how is this guy only No. 246 in the World Golf Ranking? -- Jeff Bergerson

Cody Gribble

The king of the fall season, this PGA rookie has been cold as of late with only two made cuts in the last eight events (T-48 at the Players and T-41 at the Dean & DeLuca) but it has been his driving accuracy that's held him back. Gribble can score at will on easy tracks, mostly on the strength of his putter. Gribble has hit 40.71 percent of putts for 1-putts, avoids 3-putting at an elite clip, and though he ranks low on the short-range approach distances, he's still putting the ball within 25 feet. That's all it will take him to score. If he keeps it in the fairway, he'll be a contender here. -- Adam Daly

FanDuel value picks

Maverick McNealy

The amateur out of Stanford is at the top of the rankings and at a crossroads in life. He has the option of going on to play professional golf, where he will be the top prospect in the game, or following in the footsteps of his billionaire father, Scott, who co-founded Sun Microsystems. McNealy won the Haskins Award as the top collegiate golfer in 2015 and has competed on the PGA Tour several times in the last two years. The sky's the limit for McNealy, and in a soft field on an easy course, young Maverick should shine. His price also allows for a great deal of wiggle room in constructing the rest of your roster. -- Zach Turcotte

Chez Reavie

Reavie is a streaky golfer, but he appears to be in great form right now. With recent finishes of T-43 at the Travelers Championship, T-16 at the U.S. Open and T-4 at the St. Jude Classic, he looks primed for another top-25 finish at the John Deere Classic. His approach game and par-4 scoring are currently working and that plays well at TPC Deere Run, where it translates into decent fantasy scoring and potentially bonus points for a top 20 finish. -- Erik Dantoft

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