The end of the PGA Tour season comes fast and furious after the Open Championship. This week’s 3M Open and next week’s Wyndham Championship are the final two regular season events before the FedEx Cup Playoffs kick off in Memphis in August. I can already picture the swamp ass.
Updates to the PGA Tour mean that this year’s FEC Playoffs will feature just 70 players instead of the 125 that have participated in years past. That reduction is proving immediately impactful and has already increased the intensity of the final regular season events. How long this format will be around given the PIF’s arrival is a conversation for another day.
As Andy wrote on Wednesday, two-time major winner Justin Thomas is in Minnesota fighting to get into the top 70. And there are dozens of other players whose futures are less certain that are hoping to move up in the standings this week. There are also higher-ranked players vying for better positioning as they look forward to the Tour Championship.
Here’s some players not named Justin Thomas to watch over the two weeks:
Cameron Young (No. 41) – Has been buoyed in recent weeks by top 10s at the John Deere Classic and Open Championship but is well below where you’d expect a guy of his caliber to be this time of year. If he carries this momentum into the three playoff events he could see a steep rise in rankings over the last two months of the season.
Hideki Matsuyama (No. 54) – The 2021 Masters champion has never finished outside the top 30 in the FedEx Cup standings. But just two top 10s in the 2022-2023 season has Matsuyama playing in both the 3M Open and Wyndham Championship to improve his standing.
Keith Mitchell (No. 66) – It’s been a boom or bust year for Mitchell as he finds himself with two top 5s and 11 finishes outside the top 40 in 2023. He’s consistently seen his FedEx Cup ranking slip over the last four months and now finds himself holding on by a thread with just two events remaining in the regular season.
Shane Lowry (No. 73) – One top-10 finish on the year isn’t going to get it done. He has four top 20s in his last five starts but needs decent play at the 3M and Wyndham to move through.
Justin Suh (No. 76) – The former USC standout had a strong stretch of golf earlier this year but has cooled off considerably since his T-6 at the Players Championship. He has just one top-20 finish since March and is in danger of missing out on the playoffs. Thankfully he’s off to a great start in Minnesota.
Adam Scott (No. 80) – Seeing Scott outside the top 75 is probably a surprise to casual golf fans but he’s played very mediocre golf this year by his standards. He’s playing next week at the Wyndham where he lost in a playoff in 2021. He’ll need a high finish there to earn his way to Memphis and into next year’s designated events.
Joel Dahmen (No. 81) – Joely D has become a fan favorite since his Netflix episode aired, but he’s struggled to maintain consistent play. He has 10 missed cuts in 25 starts. He’s finished the year between No. 70 and 100 three times in the last five years so it’s not unfamiliar territory for him, but he was undoubtedly hoping for more this year.
This piece originally appeared in The Fried Egg newsletter. Subscribe for free and receive golf news and insight every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.