Power rankings, Farmers Insurance Open: Can Schauffele and Co. stop Rahm?




 

The PGA Tour stays in the Golden State for this week's Farmers Insurance Open. They hop over from La Quinta to La Jolla as they ready to do battle with Torrey Pines.

After the first three events of the new year have produced a combined winning score of 72 under, we should expect the birdies to stop flowing this week, at least at the South Course. Nine of the last 10 winners of the Farmers Insurance Open have failed to eclipse the 15-under mark.

The event will feature a full field of 156 players, thanks to the use of two courses over the first 36 holes. They will play one round at the North Course and three rounds at the South Course, as long as they advance past the 36-hole cut line.

Players to Watch

Jon Rahm
He's won four of his last six worldwide starts and that becomes four of his last five if you don't count the "exhibition" Hero World Challenge. Oh, on top of that he also has a crush on Torrey Pines and the surrounding area, "This is my favorite golf course and golf tournament pretty much. Golf course, for sure, just because there's a lot of good history for me. I played good here in college, I also loved the city of San Diego. Now, when it comes to personal, [wife] Kelley always loved the city of San Diego. Before we met, her and her parents came here almost monthly to the Hilton right here at Torrey Pines. My first and only Monday qualifier we drove from ASU to here to Torrey Pines, missed it by one, drove back. The next year I end up winning the tournament. We also got engaged here at Torrey Pines, not on the golf course, on the hikes just past it. So there's a lot of good reasons for me to be happy every time I come here no matter how I play."

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Xander Schauffele
He proved a clean bill of health last week with a T-3 finish at the AmEx. Now, he gets a home game at Torrey Pines. Local comfort hasn't always yielded results for Schauffele, though. He missed the cut in four of his first five tries at the Farmers. He has settled in more recently, snagging a T-25 in 2019, a runner-up finish in 2021, and a T-34 last year.

Collin Morikawa
He suffered the lowest of lows when he surrendered a huge lead at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. On the flip side, he went an entire week with just three bogeys at Kapalua; they just happened to come at the wrong time. You would hope he was able to reflect and think about the positives instead of dwelling on the downside. This will be his first start since that Sunday "collapse" at Kapalua so it will at least be interesting to watch to see how he responds.

Taylor Montgomery
There is no slowing this rookie down. He's posted top-15s in seven of his first eight starts. He ranks 39th in driving distance and 88th in accuracy. That sounds like a good recipe for success at Torrey Pines, or any course, really. Best of all, his driver isn't even his best weapon as he ranks top 10 in strokes gained: putting and that's historically been a strong area for him during his ascent to the big stage.

Jason Day
The two-time Farmers champ arrives with a bit of form at his sails. He has posted finishes of T-21 or better in five of his last six starts, finding his groove just in time for Torrey Pines, which he's played so well at over the years. The Aussie has four other top-10s to go along with his two wins at the Farmers, in 13 starts at the event.

Will Zalatoris
He's eased his way back from his back troubles with a T-11 at the Sentry TOC and T-36 last week at the AmEx. He's historically played better as the courses get tougher, so this week's test may be more his speed. That was certainly true last year as he held a share of the 54-hole lead before posting a runner-up finish at week's end.

Ranking the Field

1. Jon Rahm
2. Xander Schauffele
3. Justin Thomas
4. Collin Morikawa
5. Sungjae Im
6. Max Homa
7. Will Zalatoris
8. Tony Finau
9. Maverick McNealy
10. Taylor Montgomery
11. Hideki Matsuyama
12. Si Woo Kim
13. Taylor Pendrith
14. Jason Day
15. Sahith Theegala
16. Adam Hadwin
17. Thomas Detry
18. Cam Davis
19. Keegan Bradley
20. Alex Smalley

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