BMW Championship pro gambler’s picks: The smart way to bet $1,000

One of the smartest plays we’ve made at GOLF.com was to go all in on Erick Lindgren as our expert prognosticator. Lindgren is a star of the professional poker circuit, with more than $10 million in career earnings. But he also has proven to be a shark at golf wagering, having chosen five outright winners already this year in our weekly picks roundtable, among other winning bets.

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That sparkling track record inspired us to strike a deal with Lindgren: every week through the end of the 2021 season, we’re giving him a $1,000 gambling budget (just play money!). In return, he’s giving us — well, you — his five best bets for that week’s event. Here’s Lindgren’s play list for the BMW Championship, the second event of the FedEx Cup playoffs, which starts Thursday at Caves Valley Golf Club, in Maryland.

(Looking to place any of these bets yourself? We teamed with BetMGM, and the online sportsbook is offering a “Bet $20 to Win $100” promotion, regardless of your wager’s outcome, as well as a “Risk-Free First Bet” up to $1,000.)

Bryson DeChambeau to win, 25-1 — $300

It’s been a bumpy stretch of late for Bryson, but Lindgren has been tracking him closely and says that DeChambeau has been playing better golf than his results show. Those results have swayed public perception, creating relatively long odds on the big hitter. That’s why Lindgren is licking his chops.

Hideki Matsuyama to win, 40-1 — $150

As much as Lindgren likes Matsuyama’s long game, he really loves his short game. Especially on bentgrass greens, Hideki’s preferred putting surface. “You’re giving me a guy of this caliber at 40-1 odds against a 70-player field?” Lindgren asks. Yes, we are.

Sam Burns, top 5 for the tournament, 8-1 — $150

Though his impressive ball-striking has been on full display throughout his breakout 2021 season, Burns remains something of a sleeper in Lindgren’s view. On a long course Caves Valley, with sizable par-3s and par-5s, our sharp prognosticator is banking on Burns to be in the mix.

Don’t sleep on Sam Burns.

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Cameron Champ, top 10 for the tournament, 6-1 — $200

Everything that Lindgren sees in Burns holds true for Champ, who ranks third on Tour in driving distance, behind only Bryson and Rory McIlroy

Keith Mitchell, top 10 for the tournament, 9-1 — $200

Mitchell’s strength is his big stick; he drives it long and straight. But his composure under pressure is rock-solid, too. His sparkling close at the Northern Trust (where he finished birdie-birdie to secure his spot in the field this week) solidified Lindgren’s belief in a player who he’s been tracking closely all year.

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A golf, food and travel writer, Josh Sens has been a GOLF Magazine contributor since 2004 and now contributes across all of GOLF’s platforms. His work has been anthologized in The Best American Sportswriting. He is also the co-author, with Sammy Hagar, of Are We Having Any Fun Yet: the Cooking and Partying Handbook.