Simply The Best

Here’s who we think will be #1 at the end of the 2016 PGA Season
 
This is an exciting time for professional golf. We have a crop of golfers in their 20s who are affable, approachable and possess all the tools to be considered the best golfer in the world, as noted by their Official Golf World Ranking. Here are the players we believe are likely to finish the 2016 PGA season ranked number one. The first three have held the number one position at some point in their career. They are presented in order of their Official Golf World Ranking as of February 7, 2016.
 
Jordan Spieth
 
The current number one, Jordan Spieth, has held this position for 14 consecutive weeks and for a total of 20 weeks. Spieth was voted PGA Player of the Year in 2015, winning the first two majors (The Masters and The U.S. Open) and coming within a shot of a playoff for the Open Championship (British Open). He won five times last year and came in second just as many times. We like the 22-year-old’s chances at remaining number one based on the following superlatives: In 2015, he led all PGA players in scoring average, finished second in number of birdies per round and third in overall strokes gained. He is also absolutely deadly with the putter, making putts from distances near and far.
 
Rory McIlroy
 
Rory McIlroy was the #1 ranked player until he hurt his ankle last year and ended up missing a good portion of the season. He has held the number one spot for a total of 95 weeks and appears to be poised for golf stardom for many years to come. Just look at his statistics for 2014: third in total driving distance with drives of over 310 yards, first in strokes gained tee to green, first in birdie average and first in scoring average. He finished that year as the money leader and is a force to be beckoned with whenever he enters a tournament. With the ankle healed and his personal life in order, we fully expect McIlroy to challenge for the top spot.
 
Jason Day
 
Jason Day could have just as easily been named 2015 Player of the Year. Like Spieth, he won five times, including the PGA Championship, the RBC Canadian Championship and the Barclays. In a two-month stretch, no one was hotter than Day last year. Like McIlroy, Day is long off the tee (313+ yards). He’s also much straighter, hitting nearly 71% of his fairways. This combination is rewarded with a lot of birdies and eagles. As long as he keeps his vertigo under control, there’s no reason why Day can’t reach golf’s pinnacle.
 
Rickie Fowler
 
Don’t let the boyish looks or edgy apparel fool you, Rickie Fowler has game. All he did in 2015 was win The Players Championship, The Scottish Open and the Deutsche Bank Championship. He followed that in 2016 with a win in Abu Dhabi and a heartbreaking second-place finish at the Waste Management Open. He gets a lot out of his small frame, averaging just under 300 yards per drive. Put all of the various aspects of the game that the PGA Tour measures, and Fowler is second overall. We believe he is determined to prove the naysayer who said that he was more style than substance wrong by reaching for the top spot.
 
Henrik Stenson
 
The elder statesman of the group at nearly 40, Henrik Stenson was ranked third in 2013 and second in 2014, so he’s familiar with the pressure and trappings of being tabbed the best player in the world. Another long hitter, Stenson has a steady, unflinching aspect to his game, which was in evidence when he won the FedEx Cup in 2013 and finished in second place in 2014. He also finished in second place five times last year, when he led the field in greens hit in regulation, total driving and total ball striking. The Swede is cool under pressure and his total game will make it easy for him to ascend to the number one ranking.
 
We mentioned that Rory held the number one spot for 95 weeks, which is impressive. However, it pales in comparison to Tiger Woods. He holds the record for the most consecutive weeks at number one (281), as well as the most total weeks in the position at 683. That’s a record we believe will never be beaten.
 
-Par Shooter
 
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