PGA Tour Expert Picks: PGA Championship

Nick Hennion @nickhennion May 14, 2024, 3:43 PM
  • Why bettors should continue to buy Xander Schauffele.
  • Bet on this player to win and finish inside the top 10.
  • Take advantage of this top nationality market, which features a massive modeling gap.

Below are my PGA Tour expert picks for the PGA Championship based on golf odds at the BetMGM online sportsbook 

Scottie Scheffler, winner of two straight and four of his last five events, is the tournament favorite this week at +450. 

Only one other player — Rory McIlroy, who won at Valhalla in 2014 — is shorter than 10/1 on the odds board. Rounding out the top three is defending champion Brooks Koepka (+1400). 

Without further delay, let’s dive into my picks at Valhalla. 

Max Homa Outright (+3300) & Top-10 Finish (+275)

In addition to the two early outright picks I made last week, Homa will likely round out my outright card at Valhalla. 

There’s no course data to cite with Homa this week. However, he’s excelled historically at Quail Hollow, which is the second-most correlative course, per datagolf.com. 

Last week, Homa finished T-8th at the North Carolina track. That’s his second consecutive top-10 at Quail Hollow, where he also won in 2019. 

Plus, Homa has quietly notched two consecutive top-10’s at major championships, including a T-3rd at the Masters. 

In terms of his statistical modeling, there’s clear evidence supporting a strong week for Homa. 

Sample his last 36 rounds on courses over 7,400 yards, and bettors will find he’s fifth in the field in SG: T2G. 

Additionally, he’s 11th in Par 4 Efficiency: 500+ yards and 26th in Par 5 Efficiency over his last 36 rounds. 

Homa also sits ninth in opportunities gained on tracks longer than 7,400 yards and ranks eighth in birdies or better gained in his last 36 rounds on bent greens. 

If Homa can boost his iron play — he’s 54th in SG: APP over his last 36 rounds and 88th in proximity: 200+ yards — expect a strong finish in a week where he’s fifth in my model. 

Xander Schauffele Top-10 Finish (+150)

If not for Scheffler’s dominance this season, we’d likely be discussing Schauffele’s brilliant run of form. 

He notched a runner-up finish at Quail Hollow last week to McIlroy — his second straight second-place finish in North Carolina — and has four top-10’s in his last five starts. 

Expand the sample to consider all events since the American Express and bettors will find Schauffele has no missed cuts, eight top-20’s and seven top-10’s. 

That’s pretty impressive for a guy who has gone 14-2-2 in his last three starts at the most correlative track to Valhalla. 

As expected in making my outright selection on Schauffele, he models out very well. 

He’s sixth in SG: T2G over his last 36 rounds on tracks over 7,400 yards and fifth in SG: APP across his last 36. 

He also leads the field in proximity from 200+ yards over the last 36 rounds and ranks fifth in Par 5 Efficiency. 

He’s not without some blemishes — 50th in opportunities gained on long courses and 54th in Par 4 Efficiency: 500+ yards. 

But, counterbalancing those rankings is the fact he’s fourth in GIRs gained, 17th in birdies or better gained on bent greens and 16th in scrambling over the last 36 rounds. 

As a result, I’ll take a solid price on him to finish top-10 given he’s second in my mixed condition model.

Corey Conners Top Canadian (+240)

My model rates this as one of the biggest price steals this calendar year. 

Conners projects out very well, as he sits fourth overall in my mixed condition model. Contributing to that rank are the following stat rankings:

  • SG: T2G – Courses Over 7,400 Yards: 3rd
  • SG: APP: 3rd
  • Greens in Regulation Gained: 2nd
  • Opportunities Gained – Courses Over 7,400 Yards: 6th

Conners also finished 13th last week at Quail Hollow, his second consecutive top-15 finish at that track. Additionally, he owns two top-20 finishes in his last three PGA Championship starts. 

Now for the fun part. 

The five remaining players in this top Canadian market — Taylor Pendrith, Mackenzie Hughes, Adam Hadwin, Nick Taylor and Adam Svensson — don’t even sniff Conners’ model rank. 

None of the five remaining players project higher than 98th in my mixed condition model. 

Just in terms of their SG: T2G rankings on courses over 7,400 yards, only one ranks higher than 65th. 

All five also rank outside the top-100 in opportunities gained on tracks over 7,400 yards and bogey avoidance on courses over 7,400 yards. 

Of the 10 measured stats this week, Conners ranks first in all but two: scrambling and Par 5 Efficiency. 

With this big a gap, I’m happy to play Conners at +240. 

Keegan Bradley Top-40 Finish (+150)

This rates out another outstanding price based on Bradley’s projection in my mixed condition model. 

Bradley’s lone major crown came at the 2011 PGA Championship, and he’s quietly made 11 cuts in 13 PGA Championship appearances. 

Of those 11 made cuts, he’s finished inside the top-40 seven times. 

Bradley also enters this tournament amidst a great run of form. He was 21st last week at Quail Hollow and notched a T-22 at the Masters. 

Further, dating back to the 2022 season, Bradley is 17th in SG: TOT on difficult tracks over 7,400 yards, 

In terms of his modeling, Bradley projects 13th in my mixed condition model. 

Of the eight stats receiving at least 10% weight in my model, Bradley ranks 20th or better in four and 40th or better in seven. 

The only blemish: 66th in bogey avoidance over his last 36 rounds on courses over 7,400 yards. However, he was 23rd in that category last week at Quail Hollow. 

Slightly unnerving is the fact Bradley missed the cut the last time Valhalla hosted the PGA Championship, but he gained +2.9 strokes tee-to-green. 

Given Bradley ranks 16th in birdies or better gained over his last 36 rounds on bent greens, bettors should expect a different result for the veteran 10 years later.

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About the Author

Nick Hennion

Read More @nickhennion

Nick Hennion is a senior content writer for BetMGM. His previous stops include VSiN, NBC Sports, The Action Network and Forbes Betting. He owns a bachelor's degree from Syracuse University and a master's degree from Northwestern University.

Nick Hennion is a senior content writer for BetMGM. His previous stops include VSiN, NBC Sports, The Action Network and Forbes Betting. He owns a bachelor's degree from Syracuse University and a master's degree from Northwestern University.