The fourth PGA Tour event of the year traces its history back to 1952 when it was first run as the San Diego Open. Following a number of venue alterations and name changes, the current sponsors came along in 2010 and the Farmers Insurance Open was born.
There have been some big-name winners over the years and the nature of this prestigious event means that we have a strong field in play for the 2021 edition.
USA Betting maintained a decent start to the year at the American Express on Sunday as Paul Casey came home as one of our top 10 finish tips. Our last two outright winner picks haven’t fared quite so well so let’s see if we can build on a promising opening with our Farmers Insurance Open predictions and picks as we stay in California for the second week in succession.
Having withdrawn from the American Express last week, Jon Rahm is back and ready to take his place in the field. The Spaniard leads the outright market by a narrow margin and is on offer at best odds of 7/1.
Rahm made his breakthrough here in 2017 and his three-stroke win was his first success on either of the main Tours. A solo second behind Marc Leishman last year keeps him on top of the Power Rankings and the form is there that can see him convert.
Just behind Jon Rahm is Rory McIlroy who is also listed at 7/1 in places but can be found, slightly further back, at a best of 17/2 (+850). The Northern Irishman tied for third in the Farmers Insurance Open 12 months ago to follow his fifth place in 2019.
McIlroy was in contention for much of the four days as he stayed on the European Tour to take on the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship. Unfortunately, a final round of even par was never going to be good enough as he slid into third behind Tyrrell Hatton and Jason Scrivener.
The market drifts from the top two to the third favorite with the sportsbooks, Xander Schauffele, who is quoted at a general 12/1. The South Course at Torrey Pines is a familiar one for Xander but he has only made the cut here once in five visits and that will deter many punters.
Moving through the chasers, Tony Finau is available at best odds of 20/1 and his big hitting can find some reward at these monster venues. Harris English, Patrick Reed, Hideki Matsuyama and Viktor Hovland are all listed at 25/1 in places.
Reed was our outright pick for the American Express with good form and stats but he missed the cut so we will steer clear this time. We do have definite interest in English who started the year with a win and was one of three players to lose out in a Farmers Open playoff to Jason Day in 2015.
On the outer fringes of the chasing pack are Scottie Scheffler and Matthew Wolff at 33/1, followed by Brooks Koepka and Sungjae Im at 35/1. None of those four really stand out at the start of 2021 but they clearly have the quality to come through if they find a return to form.
As mentioned in this Farmers Open preview, the 2015 champion was Jason Day, who will interest many at his best of 40/1. That interest is backed up by the fact that the Australian is seventh in the Power Rankings having backed up that 2015 success with another title three years later.
A strong record in this tournament makes Day a definite contender but there are other interesting names in the outside bunch. Defending Champion Marc Leishman is also available at a best of 40/1 while Bubba Watson and Adam Scott are further back at 45/1. Billy Horschel has two eighth-placed finishes in this event and is at a tempting figure of 60/1 while Cameron Smith is at the same odds.
Our Betting Preview’s 2021 Farmers Open Predictions, Picks & Course Trends
Another two-course set up awaits us this week as we head to the Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego, California. Players will split their first 36 holes between the North and South Courses before the South takes over exclusively for the final two rounds.
At some 7,765 yards, the South Course is simply the longest surface on Tour and it is lined up to host the US Open this year. Distance hitting can be important but it is worth noting that the venue ranks among the toughest in terms of fairways hit and greens in regulation. The North Course is shorter but, at 7,258 yards, it’s still one of the longest on the circuit.
Wind and rain could feature this week and that could negate power off the tee but there’s more to Tony Finau’s game than sheer muscle. We mention him as a power hitter all the time but he is an all-round player these days and with three top six finishes in six attempts at Torrey Pines, he has the form and stats to convert.
Finau for the win is the main betting pick of our Farmers Open predictions, while the top 10 finish tips can also keep our run going at the start of 2021. The selections against the offshore bookmakers are:
- Tony Finau to win @ best odds of +2000 (20/1) with Bovada. He is +1800 with Intertops or BetOnline.
- Top 10 Finish Picks: Finau (Best +200 BetOnline), Harris English (+250 BetOnline), Scottie Scheffler (+350 BetOnline) and Billy Horschel (+450 BetOnline).
Matt Harris is a golf and soccer expert for USA Betting. His other area of specialist knowledge is cricket. He is well known in sports journalism and contributes articles to a plethora of big-name websites and media outlets. Titles that he writes or has written for include: Betfair, BetVictor, Unibet & Just Bookies.