Why you should back Russell Henley for a Top 20 at the Travelers Championship

The PGA moves from West Coast to East Coast for the Travelers Championship in Connecticut. TPC River Highlands is a Pete Dye design, par 70, marked as one of the shortest course layouts on tour at 6,852 yards. Here’s one wager to make in the top-20 market.

Russell Henley

Top 20 +150

Top 10 +330

Top 5 +750

To win +3500

Henley is secretly having himself a season. Rickie Fowler is now starting to garner attention for his string of top-20 finishes halfway through the year. Well, Henley is right there with him. The Georgia native has racked up seven top-20s in his last eight tournaments, with the one being a missed cut in the PGA Championship.

What’s changed? Henley enters this week fifth-best in the field for his iron play.

His approach is now more consistent, while continuing to progress. After losing strokes on approach in three straight tournaments to start the year, Henley has since cleaned that up. He’s gained in five straight, including six-plus strokes in back-to-back events.

Previous winning scores for the Travelers Championship have been low. Xander Schauffele won last year shooting 19-under, while Harris English won the year before scoring 13-under. This tells me I need a player who can give himself birdie opportunities and then execute. Henley isn’t particularly known for his putting. However, he has gained strokes on the green in three straight, and in six of his last seven tournaments played.

Not only does he have good results on Pete Dye-designed courses (five top-20s in his last seven), but he also had good course history at TPC River Highlands. In five trips, Henley has finished T19 or better in three.

Henley has four tour wins, with his last being in Mayakoba in November. At 35-1, a win is on the table but getting plus money for a top 20 is a no-brainer risk on a player who’s producing consistent results.