How big does it if truth be told feel so to demand the basic interrogate on most everyone’s mind across the golf world: Who’re you picking to make a selection at Augusta National in April? The 85th version of the Masters has formally arrived with Round 1 dwelling to commence Thursday morning, and with a huge topic that contains many of the most life like seemingly experts and one of the crucial pause amateurs on the earth, the first well-known of 2021 ought to be an epic chase onward.
The Masters storylines are abundant this week. Dustin Johnson is attempting to change into the fourth golfer to make a selection assist-to-assist green jackets, whereas Rory McIlroy stays seeking out his first. Unfortunately for McIlroy, he’s no longer taking part in at his perfect level at the present, which places him further assist on the percentages board than he’d otherwise sit.
Justin Thomas — because the winner of the 2021 Gamers Championship — is hot entering the occasion, nonetheless so is Jordan Spieth, who has no longer most effective had an fabulous originate to 2021 nonetheless neutral gained the Texas Birth on Sunday for his first PGA Tour victory since 2017. Both will be in Featured Groups on Thursday. Be definite to test our 2021 Masters protection files for more files on how to sight the occasion dwell.
So what will happen this week at Augusta? Let’s pick a see at a plump dwelling of predictions and picks from our CBS Sports experts. Test out a plump dwelling of 2021 Masters odds by the exercise of William Hill Sportsbook and 2021 Masters tee times to sight when your popular golfers will pick the direction.
2021 Masters expert picks, predictions
Kyle Porter, golf writer
Winner — Jordan Spieth (10-1): Well, I’m all in at this point. May perhaps perhaps as smartly produce it real. Are trying and overlook the Texas Birth victory whenever which that you can well well also and focal point on the fact that he’s tops by the exercise of original iron play and history on this golf direction. Final week’s pick will hold relaxed him a bit, even though I have not any realizing if it be even lawful for Spieth to be relaxed. Either draw, he’ll contend (and I have confidence, pick) because he’s unbelievably trim on this golf direction and he’s gained strokes on draw shots in 22 of his closing 25 stroke-play rounds. The rumors are valid, folk. He’s assist, and he’s been assist for a whereas.
Sleeper — Sergio Garcia (45-1): I do know I will remorse this, nonetheless I will not lend a hand myself. Since Feb. 1, most effective Paul Casey has hit the ball better than Garcia. I’m taking into account his original history at well-known championships (9 uncared for cuts since his pick right here in 2017), nonetheless he has pick equity at big events, and the tee-to-green numbers (2.35 strokes gained per spherical since Feb. 1, in accordance with Info Golf) are complex to overlook.
High 10 lock — Dustin Johnson: It appears amid the Spieth hoopla love now we hold all forgotten relating to the No. 1 participant on the earth and defending champion of this occasion. He has five straight top 10s right here and has most effective misplaced to Tiger Woods in his closing two outings. A difficult direction ought to if truth be told benefit what he does easiest, and a few of his original struggles (whenever you need to name them that) were on legend of some strangely unhappy inserting, which is much less concerning than if he became as soon as no longer hitting the ball smartly.
Considerable one who positively would possibly well well well no longer pick — Brooks Koepka: Does this count? Ideal one participant within the topic has more majors than Koepka, who gained assist in February, nonetheless I construct no longer resolve into the bravado about being ready to gut it out this week. Or no longer it is heart-broken because Koepka offers a great depth to well-known championships, nonetheless I’d be completely tremendously bowled over if he came in and gained this after present process a knee task and showing up on the occasion with out a proper occasion work within the weeks main into it.
Shock prediction: Phil Mickelson gets into contention one day. Again, I construct no longer know the draw fearless it is to affirm that a three-time Masters champion is going to play smartly at the Masters, nonetheless Lefty has also dropped out of the pause 100 within the Official World Golf Rankings and does no longer hold a top 10 right here since 2015. Nonetheless, he’s been flushing his irons, and on a tricky, rapid setup, his direction files will be disproportionately treasured. I construct no longer know that this would possibly occasionally whisk the final draw till Sunday, nonetheless I have confidence Mickelson would possibly well well well also hold himself a enjoyable little week spherical Augusta National.
Lowest spherical: 66 (-6)
Successful get: 278 (-10)
Winner’s Sunday get: 70 (-2)
Chip Patterson, writer
Winner — Dustin Johnson (8-1): When D.J. capped his 20-under pick in November, I without lengthen regarded as him my to find to whisk it assist. Or no longer it is never particularly the draw he managed the direction and the original deliver of his game because the No. 1 participant on the earth nonetheless rather how the 2020 pick became as soon as the culmination of original success at Augusta National. Since 2015, D.J. has finished within the pause 10 of every Masters originate with a T2 in 2019 and a T4 in 2016. So on the total we consult with the direction history and focus on who has “learned the Rubik’s dice,” and the outcomes clearly expose D.J. being one among those golfers who has bought the game notion to make a selection. Among the finest reason to bet against D.J. prior became as soon as a belief that every those high finishes with out wins had been indicative of some extra piece missing from his well-known championship repertoire, nonetheless now that he’s broken the seal and joined the a pair of majors membership, I have confidence we would possibly well well well also survey a floodgates-form of whisk.
Sleeper — Matthew Fitzpatrick (60-1): Usually misplaced when discussing the big young avid gamers in golf is their successes outdoors the PGA Tour. Fitzpatrick, 26, does no longer but hold a winner on the tour nonetheless is a six-time winner on the European Tour. I love the cost right here attributable to his original make in PGA Tour events, ending T9 at The Gamers, T10 on the Arnold Palmer Invitational, T11 on the WGC-Workday Championship and T5 on the Genesis Invitational. Those are strong finishes against stable fields, and so they’ve propelled Fitzpatrick to No. 16 within the OWGR, a fresh career high. Statistically, he does not hold anything I’d categorize as elite primarily based totally on his restricted pattern size in 2021, alternatively it be his improvements on the green (ending No. 2 on the PGA Tour in strokes gained inserting in 2020) that give me self belief he can prevail at Augusta National. Fitzpatrick has made every cut on the Masters since 2016 when he had his career-easiest well-known enact at T7.
High 10 lock — Jon Rahm: Cry out to the neutral had a baby bump, nonetheless even with out the pattern of golfers taking part in smartly with a newborn on the earth, right here is a rock stable to find. Rahm is simply too lawful and has too considerable appreciation for this direction to remark he’s no longer going to enact 72 holes contrivance the pause of the leaderboard. He would possibly well well well also pick it, be in contention the final draw or backdoor his draw in with a low get on Sunday. Either draw, over the direction of the week, he’ll be play smartly enough in comparison to the remainder of the topic to enact within the pause 10.
Considerable one who positively would possibly well well well no longer pick — Brooks Koepka: I take care of the storyline of Koepka showing up to Augusta with surging self belief less than a month a long way from surgical map on his valid knee. He says he became as soon as hitting balls “seven days out of surgical map” and going by draw of intense rehab intervals to prepare for this championship. Again, it be one among my top five popular storylines of the week, and I will be thrilled to focus on about it nonetheless I construct no longer remark walking the direction for four days straight — a more difficult toddle than most would remark given elevation changes that construct no longer constantly expose up on TV — is going to hold him positioned to make a selection slack Sunday afternoon.
Shock prediction: A pair of gap-in-ones! I want to head a step farther and declare we will hold a pair of aces at No. 16, as “Redbud” has offered basically the most gap-in-ones in Masters history, nonetheless let’s leave some room open for this prediction to hit. Every of the closing four times the Masters has been held in its historical April space on the calendar there has been a minimal of 1 ace on No. 16, including two in 2019 (Bryson DeChambeau and Justin Thomas) and three in 2016 (Shane Lowry, Davis Like III and Louis Oosthuizen).
Lowest spherical: 63 (-9)
Successful get: 269 (-19)
Winner’s Sunday get: 68 (-4)
Who will pick the Masters, and which long shots will stun the golfing world? Talk about with SportsLine to sight basically the most up-to-date projected leaderboard, all from the model that is nailed six golf majors and is up nearly $10,000 for the rationale that restart.
Kyle Boone, writer
Winner — Rory McIlroy (14-1): While McIlroy has no longer been ready to drop Augusta National and claim a green jacket, he has been terminate in original years with six top-10 showings in his closing seven outings. McIlroy became as soon as nails in his Masters showing in November, too. If no longer for a gap-spherical 75, we would possibly well well well also very smartly be talking about his attempt at a repeat reach this week. His last 54-gap get of 202 became as soon as one stroke better than Johnson, who carded a 203 over his last three days to don the green jacket. At 14-1, McIlroy items impossible payment. If he brings his “A” game, he’ll be within the mix to the tip on Sunday.
Sleeper — Cameron Smith (35-1): Quiet pretty green on the PGA Tour, the 28-300 and sixty five days-feeble Aussie makes up for his inexperience with some proper, early success. He finished top 20 at The Gamers Championship and came in fourth on the Genesis Invitational. He’s also stumbled on big success on the Masters led by a T2 enact closing November and a T5 enact in 2018. Getting 35-1 odds on a participant with two career top-five finishes in four Masters appearances is about as lawful a payment as which that you can well well procure.
High 10 lock — Justin Thomas: When J.T. is on his game, he’s one one of the most life like seemingly tee-to-green golfers on the tour. And even when he’s no longer, he can labor and grind his system to contention as he figures issues out on the flit. However the draw he’s finished many of the closing six months is tracking in direction of a surefire top-10 enact. He finished fourth on the Masters in November and managed a top-10 U.S. Birth enact in September despite combating by draw of about a grotesque rounds to to find there. He’s improved his last standing at this occasion yearly over the closing five years so it tracks that this week will be one among his easiest showings.
Considerable one who positively would possibly well well well no longer pick — Jordan Spieth: Successful the Texas Birth within the lead-up to Masters week is a lawful indication that Spieth, whose career has been a roller coaster, is assist on an upward trajectory. And no query, what he’s finished one day of the last few months has been encouraging. However Spieth’s ghosts at Augusta are proper. He has finished outdoors the pause-20 his closing two showings at Augusta National, and this direction would possibly well well well also additionally be unforgiving whenever you to find into your individual head, which Spieth is wont to construct.
Shock prediction: Bryson DeChambeau leads after more rounds than the eventual champion. Plenty became as soon as made within the lead-up to his Masters appearance closing 300 and sixty five days attributable to his length off the tee and the boldness he displayed before the occasion in his skill to wreck Augusta, which ended in a T34 enact. That became as soon as a humbling journey for one among golf’s longest, strongest golfers. He’ll be within the mix entering the weekend and atop the leaderboard entering Saturday fueled by that failure.
Lowest spherical: 65 (-7)
Successful get: 270 (-18)
Winner’s Sunday get: 67 (-5)
Adam Silverstein, editor
Winner — Justin Thomas (10-1): One month within the past, in this similar chronicle, I predicted J.T. to make a selection the 2021 Gamers Championship. Entering that occasion, he had been on a roll for the rationale that originate of the season in September with three top fives and top-15 finishes at every occasion nonetheless one. He gained his 14th PGA Tour occasion and first Gamers that week at 20-1, and now his odds are halved for the Masters. Bet what? He’s restful an fabulous gamble. Test this: Thomas has improved at each Masters wherein he’s competed. He finished T39 in 2016 and therefore placed T22, T17, T12 and 4th. May perhaps perhaps also he attain that all over but again and no longer pick? Sure, nonetheless there is most effective so considerable room and so decades for him to head before claiming solo 1 and his first green jacket.
Sleeper — Webb Simpson (35-1): You know who else has been taking part in exceptionally smartly at Augusta National? You guessed it. Simpson does no longer hold the same progression as J.T., nonetheless he’s finished among the many pause 30 in five of the closing six events and inner the pause 10 in every of the closing two. Simpson has four top 10s at majors since 2018 as he searches for his first such victory since taking pictures the 2012 U.S. Birth. There would possibly be totally different, more handsome picks with shorter odds, nonetheless hi there, we’re procuring for a sleeper right here.
High 10 lock — Dustin Johnson: The defending champion is tops on the percentages board and has a real chance to change into neutral the fourth man to repeat with consecutive green jackets. His play has no longer diminished one iota since that victory in November, and he’s by hook or by crook flying under the radar with so considerable attention on Thomas, Jordan Spieth (who also will seemingly be a seemingly top 10 finisher) and Bryson DeChambeau. Some would possibly well well well also very smartly be overthinking this one. If which that you can well well even be no longer picking D.J. to make a selection, he’s damn definite restful going to contend.
Considerable one who positively would possibly well well well no longer pick — Brooks Koepka: Watch, if Koepka gained, it will most likely well well be an prominent feat. However less than three weeks after knee surgical map, he’ll toddle this direction for four days and easiest a total lot of the aforementioned names? Looking at Koepka read putts on Tuesday and Wednesday became as soon as painful — as an onlooker. He can no longer even squat and is sticking his leg out to the side to manual determined of bending his knee. And he’s 25-1 to make a selection?! Most though-provoking of luck to Brooks, nonetheless I’m no longer even definite he makes the cut no longer to affirm takes the final remark.
Shock prediction: The winner comes from the pause three favorites. I wager a favourite winning is never any longer a shock per se, nonetheless whenever which that you can well well even be talking about an 88-man topic, the percentages are rather long that one among any community of three men will pick. Or no longer it is neutral determined that every three of those guys — Johnson, Thomas and Jordan Spieth — hold the momentum entering this occasion. There would possibly be sentimental reasons to remark Rahm can pull it out love Danny Willett did a pair years within the past or intelligent hopes that Bryson DeChambeau blitzes the topic, nonetheless within the tip, a fan popular is going to within the raze pause up winning this Masters Match.
Lowest spherical: 65 (-7)
Successful get: 272 (-16)
Winner’s Sunday get: 68 (-4)
Jacob Hallex, producer
Winner — Patrick Cantlay (22-1): Spieth’s victory in Texas became as soon as a huge gift to somebody that did not want to assist him in Augusta. As Jordan’s designate fell in markets, we have viewed numbers pork up for varied avid gamers that would neutral as with out danger pick the difficulty. Cantlay is one among those guys. Info Golf has him because the fifth easiest participant on the earth. He finished three shots within the assist of Tiger Woods in 2019. He’s been ready to pop off grand this season for fabulous outcomes, including a victory on the Zozo Championship within the tumble. Cantlay comes in under-the-radar after a uncared for cut at The Gamers and failing to to find out of his community on the WGC-Match Play. Cantlay is sixth on the PGA Tour in moderate strokes gained per spherical this season. I have confidence he gains basically the most strokes on the topic this week.
Sleeper — Adam Scott (55-1): How is Scott a sleeper? It has been over a decade since he uncared for the cut on the Masters. Augusta National is a 2d shot golf direction, and Scott is a 2d shot participant. That’s why he’s had so considerable success on the PGA Tour and on the Masters over time. Scott is the youngest 40-300 and sixty five days-feeble on the PGA Tour. demand somebody on the Titlest Efficiency Institute, and so they are going to presumably repeat you he’s the toughest working man on the gym. Those gains hold resulted within the Aussie ranking 19th on the PGA Tour this season in riding distance. Mix his longer than regular riding with rain within the forecast that would level out the topic within the draw game, and I have confidence Scott has big upside this 300 and sixty five days.
High 10 lock — Cameron Smith: Discontinuance we neutral reproduction and paste my take care of letter from our preview of The Gamers? November’s Masters became as soon as the exception and no longer the guideline, nonetheless restful, the young Aussie’s efficiency can no longer be no longer approved. In 2020, Smith grew to change into the first participant in Masters history to shoot all four rounds within the 60s. Even in November, that is an spectacular feat. If it wasn’t for Dustin Johnson, he’d hold long gone up against Sungjae Im for a green jacket in a playoff. Final 300 and sixty five days wasn’t his most effective standout efficiency at Augusta National. In 2018, he finished T5 after firing a Sunday 66. I’m taking the scrappy Aussie to enact contrivance the lead but again.
Considerable one who positively would possibly well well well no longer pick — Rory McIlroy: Rory is going by draw of some issues valid now. Nothing scandalous with that; it be neutral one thing the do we mustn’t test him to be competitive at this 300 and sixty five days’s Masters. He’s been gradual ever since golf’s return from COVID-19 neutral over a 300 and sixty five days within the past. Whether or no longer it be fresh dad stress, velocity chasing or a practising shake-up … Rory hasn’t been Rory. Justin Ray has pointed out a concerning first spherical pattern by the exercise of McIlroy on the majors that has me pondering Rory would possibly well well well no longer be making a price out the gate this week. In the end, McIlroy will to find it assist and pick one other well-known, presumably pick one at Augusta … alternatively it be no longer occurring this week.
Shock prediction: Bryson DeChambeau matches “Bryson Par.” You can purchase assist in November that DeChambeau infamously acknowledged Augusta National finished as a par 67 for him. Cue three rounds within the 70s. Or no longer it is attributable to that efficiency that I’m bullish on Bryson this week. He’s showing up to Augusta with more humility and more importantly a fresh Cobra driver tailored particularly for him. Coming off a T3 at The Gamers and a victory on the Arnold Palmer Invitational, I have confidence Bryson will post his easiest enact ever on the Masters.
Lowest spherical: 66 (-6)
Successful get: 276 (-12)
Winner’s Sunday get: 69 (-3)
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