Power Ratings: AT&T Byron Nelson


Tuesday’s Draw and Fade will include reviews of Brooks Koepka, Tommy Fleetwood, Kevin Kesner, Matthew Wolf and defending champion KH Lee.

The old saying that everything is bigger in Texas doesn’t apply to grades at TPC Craig Ranch. It doesn’t happen every week that a new place winner cuts 25 Under 263, but that’s what he did to me on this racetrack a year ago.

With an average score of only 69.574, TPC Craig Ranch has been the 72nd easiest among singles hosts for full tournaments since TPC Summerlin (69.070) played to that level at the Shriners Hospitals Open in 2008. (TPC Summerlin has been tied for 71st since – you guessed it – 2009 .)

The 36-hole cut here dropped last year at 6-under 138, and 72 golfers survived. Of all the scores in the first two rounds, there were six 72 seconds and 73 one. All the others were below par. Without a doubt, the entire field must reach the ground in operation.

As in every penalty shootout, stacking and capitalizing on scoring chances is the simple formula for success. Last year, the field averaged 12.7 greens in regulation per round and an average of 4.37 breakout points. This conversion rate was the seventh easiest of the 51 courses played during the Super season. Furthermore, with a scramble clip of 65.67 percent, TPC Craig Ranch was equally ranked fourth easiest to memorize. It is a tournament in which players can continue the rallies and find their games.

On his way to the superb three-stroke PGA TOUR title, Lee ranked T5 in the greens in regulation, fourth in proximity and second in standings: Birdies-or-better. He also ranked 9th in Strokes Gained: Putting and T18 in the scramble. His spirited performance is very difficult to replicate, and that helps explain how another winner could emerge for the first time this week.

While the wind can help with sprint times, the omnipresent breezes in the Lone Star State help defend scoring, believe it or not. The steady, predominant thrust at 15 mph or so from the south will be a challenge until it is expected to explode from the north on Sunday. This is after the rain has passed. The flashes are sure to be felt throughout the week. During the day, elevations will exceed 90 degrees. Absolutely Texas.

TPC Craig Ranch is unchanged and is still at 7,468 yards. The greens of the pentegrass are controlled to accommodate the wind, so they won’t run more than 11 feet on the Stimpmeter. The longest Bermuda bristle runs 2½ inches long.

As of Monday afternoon, 53 commitments have been exempted from next week PGA Championship At the Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The last entry in this field 156 is reserved for AT&T winner Byron Nelson.


Rob Bolton’s schedule

Rob Bolton of PGATOUR.com summarizes and previews each tournament from many perspectives. Look for his following contributions as scheduled.

Monday: strength ratings
Tuesday*: sleep, level and fade
Wednesday: Choose ‘Em Preview
Sunday: medical accessoriesAnd qualifiersAnd Cabinet reshuffleAnd rookie ranking

* – Rob is a member of the PGATOUR.COM Expert Selection Committee for PGA TOUR Fantasy Golf, which also publishes on Tuesday.

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