John Deere Classic – Fantasy Golfanac

Course Details

TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Illinois
7,268 yards – Par 71 – Bentgrass Greens

Tournament Stimpmeter: 11 to 11.5 feet … Slower Green Speeds
Strength of Field Rating: ~155 OWGR … Weak Field Strength
Fairways Hit (Field Average): ~71% … Very Easy-to-Hit Fairways
Greens in Regulation (Field Average): ~71% … Easy-to-Hit Greens

Tournament Angles

#1 Bentgrass Greens
#2 Easy-to-Hit Fairways
#3 Easy-to-Hit Greens
#4 TPC Courses
#5 Performance in the Summer
#6 Weak Field Events
#7 Slow Greens
#8 Easy Courses

Previous Winners

2016: Ryan Moore -22 over Ben Martin -20
2015: Jordan Spieth -20 over Tom Gillis in a playoff
2014: Brian Harman -22 over Zach Johnson -21
2013: Jordan Spieth -19 over Zach Johnson, David Hearn in a playoff
2012: Zach Johnson -20 over Troy Matteson in a playoff
2011: Steve Stricker -22 over Kyle Stanley -21
2010: Steve Stricker -26 over Paul Goydos -24

54-Hole Leaders

2016: Ryan Moore -18
2015: Jordan Spieth -17
2014: Brian Harman -17
2013: Daniel Summerhays -19
2012: Troy Matteson -18
2011: Steve Stricker -20
2010: Steve Stricker -25

36-Hole Leaders

2016: Ryan Moore, Wesley Bryan -12
2015: Justin Thomas -12
2014: Zach Johnson, William McGirt -12
2013: Zach Johnson, Patrick Reed, Lucas Glover -12
2012: Troy Matteson -13
2011: Chez Reavie -14
2010: Steve Stricker -16

Important Interview Quotes

Q. Your 20th straight round here; does this course fit your eye? Is it a confidence course for you?
RYAN MOORE:
It is, yeah. It’s one I’ve really grown to like over the years. I played it early in my career, and I took a few years kind of off in the middle, and when I came back and started playing it again, I don’t know, I just — I appreciated it more for some reason or another. Maybe I’ve learned over the years the type of golf courses that are good for me and that set up well for me, and this is definitely one of them.

The golf course has enough angles, and the holes that you can force it down there a little bit farther, they’re pretty difficult tee shots, so guys that hit it significantly farther than me don’t have a huge advantage on a golf course like this.

Yeah, I think that’s part of the success. I enjoy the course. I like bent greens a lot. These are honestly some of the best we putt on every single year, and they’re probably the best I’ve ever seen them this year. They’re fantastic. -2016

Q. Do you feel like this is a special place? It seems to be for you?
TOM GILLIS:
Well, it could have been really special last year, but it is special, yeah. I like playing in the Midwest, and it’s a golf course that is not so much based around distance, which a lot of the TOUR is now, so it’s more shot making, wedge play and putting, and at 48, at my age, that kind of is appealing to me. -2016

Q. What is it about this place that things out the best in you?
DANIEL SUMMERHAYS:
You know, I love the greens, first and foremost. I feel like I have a pretty easy time reading the greens here. I don’t know if that has come through being here a few years in a row, and the greens are absolutely perfect. It’s really fun to putt here. I think I have that mentality that if I can get a few good looks, I’m going to make some putts. -2015

Q. And you know this place intimately. Speak some to the conditions out there today.
STEVE STRICKER:
Yeah, it’s good. The course is probably playing as long as I’ve ever seen it play. They had rain here on I guess Monday or Tuesday, about three inches so rain, so it’s pretty soft out in the fairways. It’s in great shape, though, and the greens are pure. So if you can get it on the greens, you know you’ve got a good — they’re a good speed to make them. They’re not overly quick, and you can be aggressive with them, but overall the course is in great shape, and you’ve got to keep it out of the rough. The rough is probably as thick as I’ve seen it over the years, too. -2015

Q. 25 straight rounds here in the 60s. One of these days that’s going to end; you do realize that?
ZACH JOHNSON:
I hope I’m getting an invite well into my 50s before that ends, but I’ve got to gather that’s probably not going to be the case. I mean, I enjoy it. I’m comfortable here, as I keep saying. I love everything about what this course demands and requires, and I love the greens. It’s pretty simple. -2015

Q. If you were writing a guidebook on how to play this course, seems like you’ve got it. Hit the fairways, make the putts…
SCOTT PINCKNEY:
Yeah. You have to hit the fairways. I missed a couple on my front side today, and it’s just very difficult to get it close to the hole, especially with so many undulations around these greens. You have to avoid them, and hitting from the rough makes that pretty difficult. Giving yourself an opportunity from the fairway is the first key. -2015

Q. This golf course doesn’t seem to favor any type of player. Is it putting? Is it ball striking? What do you need to be successful to put together four good rounds?
TOM GILLIS:
Well, I think your wedge game. You get a lot of short irons, so your wedge game inside — seem to get a lot of shots inside 140 yards. If you got that dialed in and you can convert making eight-, ten-footers, you got a shot at shooting something low. -2015

Q. And the course — somebody said it was kind of starting to dry up at the end of yesterday, but it’s going to be soft again tomorrow as well.
JUSTIN THOMAS:
It did. It was unfortunate to see the rain because you were starting to get some bounces. I mean the fairways are pretty generous size wise. You were starting to get some bounces and that makes them a little narrower. But now they’re — it just kind of hitting right where they stick and especially for me I usually don’t get a whole lot of roll in the first place, but yeah, it’s definitely softened up. -2015

Q. JT won here, you won here three times, Jerry is on the leaderboard, I don’t know if Andy ever contended here 30 years ago. Is this one of those weird coincidences?
STEVE STRICKER:
I think it feels like home. I think that’s the bottom line. It’s the same grass. It’s the same trees. It looks like we could be playing this up in Madison somewhere or edger ton or anywhere up north. It’s just a comfortable feel.
I mean, when we go down south and we’re playing on different surfaces down there, it’s odd for us, and that’s home for those guys who grew up in Florida. There’s a trade?off every tournament, but I think it’s just the comfort that we have when we come here, that it is what we grew up playing and what we’ve gotten used to. -2014

Q. You always play well here as well as Stricker and Johnson. Is this a course that sets up well for Midwest guys?
JERRY KELLY:
Well, it’s the grass. We just understand the bounces it’s going to take. We’d like to say this is about the purest grass you can play on, pure bent, a little poa annua mixed in. The Bermuda you’ve got to pay attention to the grain so much, and we usually overplay or underplay. Here just what you see is what you get. It’s a pretty comfortable feeling. -2014

Q. How nice is it to start playing courses again that you’ve seen before on TOUR?
JORDAN SPIETH:
It’s very nice. I think I’ve played the 18th hole here more than any other hole I’ve ever played on TOUR, so at least I’m comfortable on that tee today. But yeah, I’m learning. You find out where you’ve been, but more importantly you see the contours of the greens. You see the same pin positions, and you know where to place the ball in the fairway to give the best angle. It’s definitely advantageous to have played the place, whichever course it is, to have been there at least once or twice. -2014

Q. Lot of people were talking about the rough today or before the tournament started as far as how difficult it might be. Were you in it? If you were, did you have any problems with it?
WILLIAM McGIRT:
I’m trying to think how many fairways I missed. I think I missed two in the first cut. Only one I missed in the deep stuff was in the real deep stuff on two. You can get some good lies, you can get some bad lies, I mean, it is what it is. It’s not like a place like Congressional where everything’s just completely penalized, and it’s not a place like Harbour Town where everything’s very playable. I mean, it’s kind of hard to predict, and you just hope for the best when you walk up there. -2014

Q. Your thoughts going into the weekend, a little rain forecast for Saturday but two more rounds to go?
STEVEN BOWDITCH:
Yeah, obviously the weather coming in is going to change the golf course a little bit. The rough will be wet, so it’ll put a lot more emphasis on hitting fairways. But the greens will be softer, so you can sort of start attacking a few more pins. -2014

Q. Did the fact that you guys were playing lift and place change the mentality?
SCOTT BROWN:
I think you do here anyway, to be honest. Historically speaking, the scores are always low here, so ball in hand is nice, especially more so around the greens than anything, because you can kind of get closer to the green if you’re just on the fringe. But I mean, to be honest with you, the golf course was a lot drier than I thought it was going to be. We didn’t pick up a lot of mud all day on the ball. We could have played it down easily. -2014

Q. What is it with you and this course? This is your third year here. The last two years you’ve had one round in the 70s, the other mid 60s. Good golf, good scores, good finishes, what is it that you like about this course?
SCOTT BROWN:
It really fits my eye well for some reason. I have no clue. I tend to drive it well. If you drive it well around here, you’re going to have a lot of good looks at birdie, because we have short irons in our hands. If you hit it on the fairway, you can get it close, so I think that’s why. I just drive it well, and it leaves me some good numbers in. -2014

Q. Two years ago here at the John Deere you opened up with back-to-back 65s. What is it about this place that seemingly brings out good stuff in your game?
BRIAN HARMAN:
It suits me. It’s really a tee shot golf course I feel like. Whenever I can get going with the driver, I can push the golf course a little bit and get a lot of good looks and birdies. So hopefully we’ll continue that and see what happens. -2014

Quotes found at ASAPsports.com

Tournament Notes

2015: Preferred lies were utilized in Rounds 2 and 3, with starts and stops due to weather delays.

2015: There were weather delays in R3 and preferred lies were utilized for R3.

2014: Course received a lot of rain Friday night and preferred lies were utilized for R3.

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