More than three full months into the 2024 PGA Tour season, now is an opportune time to check in on the FedEx Cup standings, which remain a deeply flawed but very impactful component of the PGA Tour. FedEx Cup points don’t just represent how many strokes each player starts behind the leader at the Tour Net Championship, they have significant bearing on playing status and job security. Among other implications, under the PGA Tour’s current model, the top-50 finishers in the FedEx Cup standings earn guaranteed spots into all of the following season’s signature events. 

Though we’re not quite halfway through the regular season, enough points are on the board to start thinking about players who need to kick it into a higher gear to lock up status into the tour’s premier events next season. Two names stand out as high-profile players who have quite a bit of work to do if they want to finish in the top 50.

Tom Kim is currently ranked 98th in the FedEx Cup standings. After an impressive 2022-23 season in which Kim won twice, the 2024 season hasn’t been as strong for the young South Korean. Through seven starts, Kim has just two top-25 finishes, with no top 10s. Last year, Kim was an above-average putter. So far this year, Kim ranks 143rd in Strokes Gained: Putting. When a player both struggles with the putter and lacks firepower off the tee, it’s hard to be one of the top players in the world, as Kim has often been billed. Teeing it up this week in San Antonio on a golf course that heavily rewards accuracy, Kim could use a strong showing at the Valero.

Rickie Fowler is currently ranked 123rd in the FedEx Cup standings. Coming off a resurgent 2023 in which Fowler won for the first time since 2019 and made his way onto the Ryder Cup team, this season has not been anywhere near as inspiring. With eight tournaments under his belt, Fowler is yet to crack the top 30 of a leaderboard. He has some time to work out kinks in his swing, but the clock is ticking and Fowler is well outside the cutoff line right now. It’s hard to envision a PGA Tour season without Rickie Fowler teeing it up in the biggest events, but if he doesn’t get things going soon that could very well be the case next year. With three top 20s in four starts at the Valero, Rickie would do himself a huge favor by racking up some points in San Antonio this week.

This piece originally appeared in the Fried Egg Golf newsletter. Subscribe for free and receive golf news and insight every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.