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2021 Open Championship Odds & Expert Picks

The Open Championship odds are here for the 2021 tournament.

For the first time in a long time, we weren’t able to get any of our wagers across the finish line. Perhaps it came at the perfect spot on the calendar as we got it out of our system before our 2021 Open Championship odds and picks. The final major of the year, the 149th playing of the Open Championship will be its first since 2019 due to COVID-19.

As we discussed in our U.S. Open preview last month, trends and particular statistics tend to be a popular talking point during major weeks. I’ve harped on it in the past about how I am not a massive believer in trends as I take each edition of a championship as is.

While there are past statistics that point to a potential winner, I wouldn’t necessarily classify them as “trends,” whether it’s the fact the last seven Open winners have all finished inside the top 10 in scrambling percentage or that three of the last eight led the field in greens in regulation.

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What that tells me is that good golfers win. It’s not reinventing the wheel to say that it’s difficult to win a golf tournament, let alone a major championship. Sure, there are outliers every now and then – see Phil Mickelson at the PGA Championship – but for the most part, the world’s best come through time and time again. I reckon this year’s Open Championship will be no different, despite some questions I may have coming into the week.

At Bovada, Jon Rahm sits atop the 2021 Open Championship odds at +750, with an implied probability to win of 11.76 percent. If successful, a $100 bet on him would net you $750 profit. However, close behind are a number of major champions, including the 2019 Champion Golfer of the Year, Shane Lowry, at +4000.

2021 Open Championship Betting Odds

Odds To Win The 2021 Open Championship
GolferOdds
Jon Rahm+750
Brooks Koepka+1600
Dustin Johnson+1600
Jordan Spieth+1800
Justin Thomas+1800
Xander Schauffele+1800
Bryson DeChambeau+2500
Louis Oosthuizen+2800
Tyrrell Hatton+2800
Viktor Hovland+2800
Collin Morikawa+3300
Matthew Fitzpatrick+3300
Patrick Cantlay+3300
Lee Westwood+4000
Patrick Reed+4000
Paul Casey+4000
Shane Lowry+4000
Tommy Fleetwood+4000
Branden Grace+5000
Justin Rose+5000
Marc Leishman+5000
Scottie Scheffler+5000

Odds as of July 12 at Bovada

How will 2021 Open Championship Debutants Fare?

The last debut victor of the Open Championship came all the way back in 2003 when long shot Ben Curtis raised the Claret Jug. Eighteen years later, a number of first-timers arrive to Royal St. George’s hoping to accomplish the same feat. With no Open Championship in 2020, the list of debutants is longer than usual and filled with some of the biggest young names in the game.

2020 PGA champion Collin Morikawa leads the group making their first appearance in the 2021 Open Championship odds. Having played last week at the Scottish Open, Morikawa attempted to acclimate to the blustery, unique conditions of links golf. He was among a large contingent of Americans making their first professional trip to the United Kingdom.

Sam Burns, the recent Valspar Championship winner, was also among players to tee it up at the Renaissance Club. Will Zalatoris and Scottie Scheffler rounded out the quartet who despite being winless will surely be popular picks for this year’s Open Championship.

Then there are European hopefuls and potential Ryder Cup teammates Viktor Hovland and Guido Migliozzi. The Italian fist-pumping ball of energy is coming off his first major appearance at the U.S. Open where he captured a top-five finish. And of course Hovland, whose name holds a bit more weight here in the States, was victorious at the BMW International Open just a few weeks ago on the European Tour.

Will Someone Add to their Major Resume?

There’s no debating that the game of golf is in a great spot with seemingly new winners each and every week. However, it does beg the question will anyone be able to separate himself from the pack? Recent major champion Jon Rahm has looked dominant over the last two months and it wouldn’t shock anyone if he added major No. 2 at the Open Championship. Jordan Spieth, Brooks Koepka, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson will likely have a say in the matter as they are all multiple-time major winners looking to add to their collection.

Let’s not forget about the likes of Justin Thomas, Patrick Reed and Bryson DeChambeau, who haven’t had a ton of success in this championship but still boast a major resume. With the influx of recent first-time major winners, this week could be a great opportunity for these players to flip the script and author yet another chapter of their own in golf’s history book.

Course and Analysis:

The Royal St. George’s Golf Club resides in Sandwich, England. Having last hosted this event in 2011 when Darren Clarke outlasted Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson and others, it has long been recognized as one of the more difficult venues in the Open rota.

This will be the 15th playing of The Open at Royal St. George’s, but only the third since the calendar flipped to the new millennium. With Curtis in 2003 and Clarke in 2011, the last two Champion Golfers of the Year have taken the form of a longshot. With pre-tournament Open Championship odds north of +30000 at some sportsbooks, some may be inclined to follow a similar path this year.

The leaderboards those years were filled with quality players. From the names mentioned above in 2011 to Tiger Woods in 2003 and the likes of Greg Norman and Nick Faldo in 1993, I do believe this year’s championship will play out similarly and should provide a leaderboard filled with a nice mixture of skill sets and nationalities.

Measuring just short of 7,200 yards and playing to a par 70, it’s a bit surprising just how difficult this course has played in the past. Clarke was able to get to 5 under by week’s end to win by three strokes and Curtis posted a 1 under for a one-shot victory over Thomas Bjorn and Vijay Singh.

What I will say is that it is important to not overcomplicate the task at hand. There are certain players who thrive in Open Championship conditions. The recipe book is right in front of us, it’s just up to us to select the right one.

The players we will be targeting will be strong ball strikers with deft touch on and around the greens. Imagination and experience will be key as multiple reps around Open Championship-caliber venues tend to outweigh any tangible skill sets. You just have to look at Tom Watson in 2009 or even Phil Mickelson in 2013 to validate the thinking that any golfer could win.

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Open Championship Expert Picks:

Jordan Spieth (+1800 to win):

The first couple of selections may remind some of my U.S. Open preview, but it’s not without good reason. Heck, we haven’t seen Spieth since he teed it up at Torrey Pines, but what he showed that week in San Diego and leading up to it are more than enough to convince me of his chances at Royal St. George’s.

The renaissance in his game this season has been on the back of phenomenal tee-to-green play. While he has a victory to his credit, coming at the Valero Texas Open, it feels like he should have more. When factoring in the Waste Management Phoenix Open, the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, the Masters and the Charles Schwab Challenge, Spieth is in weekend contention more often than not.

He’s just a normal, Spieth-like putting week away from capturing his fourth major title. Due to strong winds, the Open Championship typically offers slower putting surfaces, which may be the change that Spieth needs to overcome his unusual putting woes. If that’s the case, Spieth’s ball striking and creativity should take over and allow him to be right there come Sunday.

Patrick Cantlay (+3300 to win):

I believe at his best, Cantlay can make a legitimate claim as the most well-rounded golfer on the tour. Potentially a spicy take, I know, but the way he gets around a golf course looks so effortless at times and should bode well for Royal St. George’s.

Not only that, but these odds seem a touch too long given the caliber of player he is. The way I see it, Cantlay is an equivalent to Xander Schauffele but has the ability to close and win big tournaments. A bit harsh, yes, but staring down Morikawa at the Memorial and Thomas and Rahm at the Zozo Championship is no small feat.

While he doesn’t have a ton of success at the Open Championship, there’s enough for me given his current form. A T-12 at Carnoustie in 2018 is his best finish to date, and while Royal St. George’s may be a greener venue, that outing demonstrated that he’s comfortable enough in these parts to at least contend.

Rickie Fowler (+8000 to win):

Call me whatever bad name you want, but Fowler always deserves consideration at the Open Championship. Having made the weekend in every Open Championship since 2013, he comes to Royal St. George’s more motivated than usual. Missing out on the U.S. Open, this is Fowler’s first major since the PGA Championship where he captured an unlikely top-10 finish.

I believe a similar outing could be in store for the former Oklahoma State Cowboy. The irons that looked completely lost at times over the last couple of seasons have now returned. If the driver makes the trip over to England, watch out as Fowler has shown he can be one of the world’s best on and around the greens.

Since the PGA Championship, Fowler has teed it up three times. He boasts finishes of T-11 at the Memorial and a T-32 at the Rocket Mortgage. The tee-to-green play in those outings combined with his silky-smooth putting stroke is more than enough to entice me at this number.

Ian Poulter (+8000 to win):

Could Poulter follow in the footsteps of an unlikely forty-something from Europe winning his first major championship at Royal St. George’s? Based on his recent play, I reckon there’s at least an outside chance of him doing so.

Missing the eventual playoff at the Scottish Open by a stroke, Poulter put together the round of the day on Sunday, carding an 8-under 63. On and around the greens, the Englishman was terrific, but it was his ball striking that finally came to life.

If Poulter is giving himself birdie look after birdie look, he becomes all the more dangerous. Comfortable in the links setting and the major championship environment, I believe this could finally be his time. He’ll have to overcome a ton, yes, but his game looks more complete than ever, and for the sake of storylines, I want Poulter on my card.

Bernd Wiesberger (+15000 to win):

In the unlikely scenario that the trend of long shots coming through at Royal St. George’s plays out this week, I want one in my back pocket myself. That’s where Wiesberger comes in. I was all aboard last week at the Scottish Open and he did nothing to deter me coming into this week; in fact, he only helped his case given his play.

The tee-to-green game once again showed up, specifically his irons, ranking inside the top 10 in Strokes Gained: Approach for the week. Spanning out, they’ve been fantastic for a good bit of time, ranking second in the field in SG: Approach at the BMW International Open en route to a T-5 finish a few weeks ago. Before then, Wiesberger captured the Made in HimmerLand in late May on the shoulders of, you guessed it, his strong iron play.

Typically extremely reliable around the greens, the Austrian’s week will come down to the flat stick. While it has disappointed at times over the last month, I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Wiesberger has the profile of a sneaky European major champion and this week at the Open Championship could be where he becomes a household name.