The American Express Predictions, Betting Odds & Top Picks

  • 2018 tournament winner and World No. 1 Jon Rahm heads the betting
  • Reigning FedExCup champion Patrick Cantlay is the second favorite
  • Event returns to pre-Covid pro-am, multi-course format

The American Express Odds

Player Odds
Jon Rahm +600
Patrick Cantlay +900
Scottie Scheffler +2000
Sungjae Im +2200
Corey Conners +2500
Tony Finau +2500
Matthew Wolff +2800
Russell Henley +2800
Talor Gooch +2800
Abraham Ancer +3000

The American Express Picks

Chris Kirk is the outright pick at +10000 win/+600 top 10 with DraftKings

Adam Schenk can grab a top 10 at +1200 with DraftKings

Cameron Tringale to beat Wyndham Clark at -138 with BetMGM

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American Express Picks

The American Express Predictions

When it was first played in the 1960s and 70s this event had a remarkable sheen of glamor with comedian Bob Hope the host, Arnold Palmer a five-time winner, and glitzy Palm Springs the venue.

Five decades on, only the location remains the same and, while the tournament retains the pro-am, multi-course format, the superstars of the game tend to avoid it.

That said, Jon Rahm and Patrick Cantlay finished 2021 as the World No. 1 and the FedExCup champion respectively, and the pair will restart the duel they started last year, which ended with the American being voted PGA TOUR Player of the Year by his peers.

Rahm is a past champion of the event and Cantlay a two-time top 10 finisher, so they have great claims to win the title and are duly both a short price to win.

Can they crack the three course challenge?

The field will play La Quinta Country Club plus PGA West’s Nicklaus and Dye courses in the first three rounds (18 holes at each) before the cut reduces the field and those left fight it out on the Dye layout.

All three courses are short par-72s with vulnerable par-5s and Phil Mickelson is among those who argues that, with the set-up straightforward to help the amateurs, the sensible tactic is to go all-out attack from the tee, knowing that the rough is not too tricky with wedge in hand.

The greens are Bermuda, but overseeded with Poa and Rye which negates the trickiness of the grain. Adam Hadwin, a two-time runner-up, had admitted to struggling on Bermuda grass, but not here because of that distinction.

A quirk of two recent winners is that Andrew Landry (2020) and Adam Long (2019) had both missed seven cuts in their previous eight starts.

Kirk Can Boldly Go

Last year we took on the favorites with Korea’s Si-Woo Kim and it proved a neat strategy as he landed a third PGA TOUR title.

A key factor in that pick was that winners since the tournament utilized the Pete Dye course twice have often been specialists on the architect’s other courses and that leads to this year’s headline selection Chris Kirk.

The American has made the cut in his last eight starts at TPC Sawgrass, landed three top 15s, led after 54 holes in 2015, and he briefly did so again last year as well.

He also has top 10 finishes at Dye’s TPC Louisiana and Harbour Town, the second of those coming as recently as last May.

This season Kirk has been carding plenty of low rounds and he did exactly that last week in the Sony Open (66-65-71-66).

Can he string four low ones together, however? He’s a four-time PGA TOUR winner so there’s no reason why not and he has decent event form, too.

He finished seventh on debut in 2011, T21st (when in the mix all week) in 2017, and T16th last year.

Take him each way in the outright at a huge +10000 with DraftKings and add the top 10 for security at +600.

Schenk Can Close It Out

We’ll stick with the big prices for our second selection in the form of 29-year-old Adam Schenk.

He’s playing the event for the fifth time this week and his record is a little better than it appears at first glance.

In 2019 he finished T67th, but he was tied eighth after 18 holes. A year later he again got off to a fast start and maintained the pace for T14th. Last year he was T10th at halfway but stumbled for T37th.

In recent weeks he has again been flattering to deceive. He led after 54 holes at the Shriners Children’s Open before finishing third and he was top 10 after 54 holes at both the ZOZO Championship and Houston Open ahead of landing top 30s.

The last two winners of this week’s event have a good record at San Antonio Oaks, home of the Texas Open, and Schenk was seventh there in 2019 (second at halfway).

This week is a great opportunity for him to come good on his simmering course and current form.

Take him to make the top 10 with DraftKings offering +1200. For the best DraftKings betting experience have a look at our in-depth review to take advantage of their bonuses and promotions.

Tringale Can Better Clark

BetMGM has opted to pair Cameron Tringale and Wyndham Clark this week and we need to take them on.

In the tournament, Clark leads the head-to-head count 2-1, but in pretty much every other way you look at this contest it is one-sided in favor of Tringale.

Throughout their careers? Tringale leads 40-28. Since the start of 2020? The advantage is 21-14. Since the beginning of last year? 14-6

Moreover, Clark hasn’t finished higher on a leaderboard than Tringale since May, trailing 8-0 in that period.

It makes perfect sense: Clark has a best finish of T22th and only three top 30s in 13 starts since the start of June (eight missed cuts)

In the same stretch, Tringale has nine top 30s in 14 starts (two missed cuts).

Take Tringale to maintain his form and dominance in this pairing. He’s -138 with BetMGM.

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How to Watch The American Express

American Express Information
Tournament The American Express
Location Dye & Nicklaus Courses at PGA West plus La Quinta CC, Palm Springs, California
When Thursday 20 January – Sunday 23 January
How to watch Thursday, Friday & Saturday 3pm & 10.30pm ET (Golf Channel), Sunday 3pm & 8pm ET (Golf Channel). And all four days on Sky Sports.

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Matt Cooper

Expert on Golf

Matt Cooper has been a sports journalist since 2009 with his work appearing at ESPN, Sky Sports, NBC, Sporting Life and the Planet Sport Network among many others, in addition to guest appearances on the BBC and CNN. Although a specialist in golf, who has traveled the world to cover the sport, Matt has also covered rugby, cricket, football and the Olympics. Email: [email protected]