Rocket Mortgage Classic picks to win: Who the experts and a gambler are betting on

Webb Simpson RBC Heritage

Is Webb Simpson in for a big week in Detroit?

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At this week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club, who does the journalists and betting analysts like? Or the caddie? Or the old-school gambler? Gimme the facts, storylines and trends. Gimme that inside-the-ropes look. Gimme your gut feeling. 

You bet, bettor. 

Welcome to’s new gambling advice column, where we’ve assembled a panel of those aforementioned experts to make three “best bets.” A real-life professional bettor here will then heed that advice, add his acumen and wager his own cash. It’s not unlike what you do through texts and Google searches — except now it’s all in one place. 

Our hope is to help you with your own weekly picks, whether those are for a low-stakes office fantasy league, (legal!) big-bucks bets with a sportsbook or through free-to-play Chirp Golf, an app from our parent company that is available in the App Store and at Google Play

Now, on to some facts, the expert picks, the bettor’s best bets and info on how to bet for free.

The facts

This week’s tournament: Rocket Mortgage Classic, Detroit Golf Club, Detroit, Mich.

TV: Thursday, July 1: 3-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel)
Friday, July 2: 3-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel)
Saturday, July 3: 1-3 p.m., ET (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. ET (CBS)
Sunday: July 4: 1-3 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. ET (CBS)

Top 10 Favorites, via DraftKings odds: Bryson DeChambeau, +750; Patrick Reed, +1,200; Hideki Matsuyama +1,900; Webb Simpson, +1,900; Joaqin Niemann, +2,200; Jason Day, +2,500; Will Zalatoris, +2,650; Jason Kokrak, +2,800; Matthew Wolff, +3,000; Sungjiae Im, + 3,500

Defending champion: Bryson DeChambeau

Expert picks

Jessica Marksbury,, @Jess_Marksbury

Bet 1: Top 10 Patrick Reed (+150). Reed missed the cut here last year but was T5 in 2019. He’s been playing solid golf all year — has only missed four cuts in 18 events and has six top 10s. I think he’ll add another one this week.

Bryson DeChambeau at Rocket Mortgage Classic
2021 Rocket Mortgage Classic tee times: First round groupings for Thursday
By: Kevin Cunningham

Bet 2: Top 20 Kevin Kisner (+175). Kiz was third last year and is coming off a solid T5 finish at last week’s Travelers. Good momentum.

Bet 3: Top 20 Webb Simpson (+125). Betting on Simpson was the only reason I finished in the black last season, so I’m going back to my roots this week.

Brady Kannon, host, Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSiN), @lasvegasgolfer

Bet 1: Top 20 Finish Alex Noren (+300). This golf tournament figures to be a test from 150 yards on in and Noren has an excellent short game. He also has shown the ability to putt very well on the Poa Annua and the Poa/Bent combo greens with his success at Torrey Pines and at Riviera for the Genesis Invitational. He’s been playing pretty solid as of late and I expect that to continue.

Bet 2: Top 20 Finish Matt Jones (+300). Similar story here as Jones also has a tremendous short game. He’s 20th on Tour in Scrambling and 29th in Strokes Gained: Putting. Jones too has shown the ability to flourish on this type of putting surface with a great history at Pebble Beach and an 8th-place finish earlier this season at the Genesis Invitational.

Bet 3: Full Tournament Matchup Si Woo Kim (-105) over Keegan Bradley. Kim has a great history at The Wyndham Championship with three top-five finishes in five tries, including a win, and that is another Donald Ross design, like it is this week at Detroit Golf Club. Bradley’s strengths are off the tee and iron play — not putting or short game — and after being in a nice groove not long ago, Bradley’s form has fallen off. So I’ll take the Ross design specialist head to head.

Wes Reynolds, host, Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSiN), @WesReynolds1

Bet 1: To Win Jason Kokrak (+2800). Kokrak missed the cut two weeks ago at the U.S. Open, but Detroit GC should be perfectly suited for his game. He ranks 6th in SG: Off The Tee in this field over the last 24 rounds and leads the field for Birdie or Better over the last 24 rounds.

Bet 2: Top 10 Troy Merritt (+650). Merritt has made six of his last seven cuts including three top 10s within that span.

Bet 3: Top 10 Doc Redman (+450). Redman has two top-10 finishes over his last five events. He is also a Donald Ross design specialist of sorts. Redman has posted four top-three finishes in his career, and two of those are at Ross designs, including a runner-up finish at Detroit Golf Club in 2019.

John Rathouz, PGA Tour caddie and Caddie Network contributor, @rathouz

Bet 1: Webb Simpson -120 vs Hideki Matsuyama -110, both going off at +1900 to win. Webb professed his love of Donald Ross courses in the media room on Monday and has the results to back it up. Not as keen on Matsuyama comparatively in a tournament that will require a fair amount of putts to be made. Hideki does have two years under his belt and two top-20 finishes though. Webb is 19th on Tour in Birdie Average and 20th in SG: Putting.

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By: Jessica Marksbury

Bet 2: Top 10 Sepp Straka (+650). Straka has finished 8th and 11th in the first two editions at Detroit Golf Club and enters coming off a top 10 at the Travelers after four missed cuts in a row amid a caddie change. Horse for the course, feeling better about his game and situation, especially with his card locked up for the year.

Bet 3: To Win Joaquin Niemann (+2200). Niemann finished 5th here his only other time playing in ‘19. He’s been solid but not impressive since the West Coast swing, but this is his first opportunity in a while to tee it up in a true birdie-fest. Super aggressive player who is 16th on Tour in Birdie Average and 18th in par-5 scoring on a course with four par-5s. Knows how to win and may play inspire with countryman Mito Pereira teeing it for the first time as a full-fledged member after his three-win promotion from the Korn Ferry Tour.

The “old-school” gambler, an “old-school” gambler, @notthefakeW

Bet 1: Top 5 Webb Simpson (+400). The man says he likes himself some Donald Ross designs. There is evidence that he plays well on them, too.

Bet 2: To Win Kevin Kisner (+3,500). Never mind that Bryson is the defending champ. This is more of a tactical course than a bomber’s track. I like Kisner’s gritty ways here.

Bet 3: To Win Jason Day (+2,500). On the one hand, the man’s got a weak back, as he showed a week back. On the other hand, he’s playing some beautiful golf. Here’s hoping he’s got his Advil dosage just right.

The pro bettor’s best bets 

Erick Lindgren. Lindgren, the 2008 World Series of Poker Player of the Year, has won more than $10.5 million in poker tournament earnings and is an avid sports bettor. @EdogPoker

Bet 1: To Win Bryson DeChambeau (+750). The defending champ and arguably the best golfer on the planet. I like.

Bet 2: Top 5 Matt Wolff (+550). Those who forget their history are doomed to lose money. I’m looking for a repeat of his performance last year.

Bet 3: To Win Cam Davis (+10,000). One of my favorites makes a comeback this week. He’s a beast on the par-5s.

How to bet on the Rocket Mortgage Classic — for free! 

Chirp is a new golf-gaming platform that allows users to place live bets using fake money to win amazing, real-life prizes. The app, which is operated by our 8AM Golf affiliate partner 8AM Golf, is designed to inject the adrenaline of live gambling into a fun, risk-free contest. For more on Chirp, click here.

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