Preview: Valero Texas Open
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The PGA Tour will stay in Texas this week, heading to San Antonio for the Valero Texas Open, which will be played at TPC San Antonio AT&T Oaks Course. The course is a par-72 layout that plays close to 7,400 yards and can be a test if the Texas winds get blowing. A regular stop on tour since 2010, winning scores have ranged for -8 to as low as -20, when Corey Conners won in 2019. Golfers should be letting it rip from the tee and taking great care when approaching the green; missing in the wrong spots has proven to be quite penal in the past at TPC San Antonio.
Best bets – Tipico Odds
Lanto Griffin -110 vs. Zach Johnson (tie is a loss)
I was going through the head-to-heads being offered this week and this one stuck out a bit. Johnson, although making a lot of cuts of late, has not been playing great golf. If you look through his strokes gained stats, he has definitely entered the “old man” phase of his career (which honestly may describe his game his whole career). By that, I mean he is gaining a majority of his strokes on the field through is putting. The rest of his game has been very weak and it’s hard to be consistent and finish well if nothing in the ball striking department is click.
Griffin on the other hand has been excellent of late both off the tee and with his approach play, gaining close to a full stroke with his irons per round! If you look long term, iron play has been strong for him, as well as putting and that will be a solid combination this week. When I ran this through my simulations, I made Griffin a slightly larger favorite and hopefully he can continue to elevate this week and Johnson declines.
72-hole Group C winner – Brendan Steele +350
The rest of the group contains Cameron Tringale, Chris Kirk, Cameron Davis and Sam Burns. I like most of these golfers this week but overall, I believe Steele has some value at +350 as I made him closer to +315. I think the biggest difference is that I am a lot less bullish on Kirk in my simulations and that win equity difference benefits Steele the most in the numbers. Steele has been playing extremely well OTT, having gained strokes every event dating back into last November and the iron play as been strong as well. TPC San Antonio’s greens can also be difficult to hit in regulation and I’ve seen historically that a crisp short game can be an advantage. Steele has been quite good in this department long term and recently as well.
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