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Ryder Cup 2021: Breaking down potential United States captain’s picks before Steve Stricker’s decision

The USA Ryder Cup crew will doubtless be finalized on Wednesday morning with simply over two weeks remaining till the primary tee pictures are hit on the forty third Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits. The highest six are already locked in, however the different six are nonetheless hanging within the steadiness till U.S. captain Steve Stricker makes his choices.

There have been some rumblings concerning the potential for a COVID-19 substitute to be named for either side. We’ll name this the Rahm Rule. It could be to guard the Ryder Cup groups from what occurred to Jon Rahm on the Memorial earlier this yr when he needed to withdraw after Spherical 3 attributable to a constructive COVID-19 check. It’s not a certain factor this can occur, nevertheless it may.

Additionally, with Brooks Koepka’s well being seemingly up within the air — he struck a tree root throughout his closing 9 holes on the Tour Championship, harm his wrist and withdrew — I would not be shocked both manner concerning his standing for the crew.

There are nonetheless some variables to finishing this crew, however for all intents and functions, we’ll know the ultimate 12 United States golfers on Wednesday morning. So with Collin Morikawa, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Cantlay and Koepka already locked in, who will Stricker choose to hitch them for what must be an unbelievable Ryder Cup on the finish of September

Listed here are the candidates ranked by how doubtless it’s that they get picked.

Jordan Spieth (ninth in closing Ryder Cup rankings): This one is straightforward, and Spieth mentioned it greatest final week on the Tour Championship when he was requested if he thought he could be a captain’s choose: “I really feel like Justin may withdraw from the crew if he does not choose me, so I really feel fairly good about it.” Odds: 100%

Xander Schauffele (eighth): There is no such thing as a justification exterior of vandalizing a teammate’s residence during the last week for Schauffele to not be on this squad. I in all probability may have included Spieth, Schauffele and Tony Finau as locks together with the highest six above. Odds: 100%

Tony Finau (seventh): Once more, it might be one of many tales of the yr for Finau to not play at Whistling Straits. The course is ideal for him, he had success in Paris, and he is well-liked amongst teammates. Lock metropolis. Odds: 100%

Harris English (tenth): That is the place it begins to get a bit shaky. I actually consider English can be on the crew, however you may discuss your self out of it a pair methods. He did not have an incredible playoff run (no prime 10s), and he was not all that nice on the main championships this yr (T21, T64, third, T46). Neither of those can be sufficient to maintain him away, and I am genuinely excited for him to play his first Ryder Cup, however he is not a 100% lock just like the three above him. Odds: 99%

Daniel Berger (twelfth): You understand how everyone appears to be using for Kevin Kisner and Kevin Na proper now as a result of they’re “players” and “fearless” and all these different qualities we love to use to those matches? That is Berger however with extra instruments from tee to inexperienced. He is misplaced strokes to the sphere in simply three rounds because the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines began, and he’ll stand as much as anyone

“I believe I am actually good associates with nearly everyone that is within the prime 15 on that checklist, and I really feel like I can play with anyone,” mentioned Berger on Sunday. “My sport form of fits all totally different form of programs: quick, lengthy. I believe I drive the ball very well. I putt very well. I chip very well. … While you take a look at my total golf sport, there’s probably not any areas that I’ve a weak spot in. I believe that is at all times a pleasant factor to have on the crew.

“I am low key and really chill and I am good associates with everyone on the crew. I do not suppose anybody dislikes me on the crew, and I simply suppose it is good to have some younger guys in there. Clearly, there’s lots of younger guys which have made the crew this yr which might be doubtlessly going to be picked, however I believe we’re beginning to come into the Ryder Cup the place younger is OK.” Odds: 80%

Scottie Scheffler (14th): That is the place it will get difficult. On paper, Scheffler might be your best option. He carried out the most effective of anybody left on the majors this yr (4 prime 20s and three prime 10s) and is the second-best course fit of anyone left on the list. It helps that he is a younger, budding star. Guys with that profile have a pleasant historical past at this occasion. He appears to be the man most individuals behind the scenes suppose will most probably be the choose, though that would clearly change earlier than Wednesday. Odds: 40%

Webb Simpson (thirteenth): The case for Simpson is considered one of continuity, management and maturity. He does not have the uncooked energy possessed by Scheffler to tackle Whistling Straits, however he is fabulous within the crew room, can (and can) play with anyone and was form of nasty on the 2018 Ryder Cup (particularly downing Justin Rose on Sunday in Paris). This is able to be considered because the protected, “let’s simply run it again on a course that fits us higher” selection. Odds: 40%

Patrick Reed (eleventh): Reed is the hardest to nail down right here. He missed a month with an ankle harm in addition to pneumonia (that looks like it was really COVID-19). His historic Ryder Cup report is plain, however so is the truth that he dragged the remainder of his teammates on his manner out of Paris (and he is additionally 2-5-0 in his final two crew occasions). For the sake of a provoke crew, I do not suppose Stricker ought to take him, however the stress of being criticized for one more loss whereas leaving Captain America at residence can be sturdy. Odds: 20%

Sam Burns (sixteenth): Burns is compelling as a younger future star, however I do not suppose you may take him over Scheffler until you actually consider he is a a lot larger gamer than Scheffler. That mentioned, Scheffler has higher numbers throughout the board regardless of not profitable like Burns. If the class you are selecting from is “younger stud whose sport matches Whistling nicely and will present an incredible spark as a newcomer on this crew” then every little thing factors to Scheffler, until, like I famous earlier, you simply see a stage of competitiveness in Burns that Scheffler does not have. Odds: 10%

Kevin Na (nineteenth): There may be momentum for Na, actually, as he is completed within the prime two in three of his final six occasions, together with a T1 end on the Tour Championship (regardless of beginning place). He additionally completed T12 at the Masters this yr and is sixth in strokes gained within the final three months of all eligible American and European gamers. However boy is he a nasty match for this golf course. He is exterior the highest 150 in driving distance this season, and Whistling Straits disproportionately rewards driving distance. It is enjoyable to consider him driving Rahm and Rory McIlroy mad along with his walked-in putt antics, and perhaps that is the path Stricker goes, however his statistical profile doesn’t match up very nicely with what the U.S. is attempting to do. Odds: 10%

Kevin Kisner (18th): Principally the entire identical stuff as Na, however Kisner didn’t make it to the Tour Championship. He solely has three top-10 finishes this yr and adopted his win on the Wyndham Championship with a MC-T66 exhibiting within the playoff. I do not suppose you may put him on the crew based mostly on, primarily, one good week on the Wyndham a month in the past. Odds: 5%

2020 Ryder Cup gear now out there

The Ryder Cup begins September 24, and team-issued gear is now out there. Get jackets, polos, hats, hoodies, and far more to help your crew. Shop here.

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