McIlroy, Johnson vs. Fowler, Wolff odds: 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief picks from top-rated golf expert

The competition should be fierce when the 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief charity event tees off Sunday in Juno Beach, Fla., but the course also will be on display for the first time. It will be the first televised event from Seminole Golf Club, one of the elite courses designed by the legendary Donald Ross. Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson will be paired up to face Rickie Fowler and fellow Oklahoma State alum Matthew Wolff in a team skins competition. 

The $3 million purse will be donated to charity, and fans will be encouraged to contribute to the coronavirus relief efforts as well. William Hill has listed McIlroy/Johnson as the -220 favorite, with Fowler/Wolff set at +190 in the 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief odds. Before making any 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief picks, be sure to see the McIlroy/Johnson vs. Fowler/Wolff predictions from SportsLine’s resident golf insider, Sal Johnson

A media legend and consummate golf insider, Johnson is coming off a red-hot year on his golf picks that has continued into this season. He featured Woods in his best bets for the 2019 Masters and backed Brooks Koepka in his picks for the PGA Championship, and both players pulled off victories. In the season-ending Tour Championship, he nailed it, pegging Koepka, McIlroy and Xander Schauffele as main contenders to come out on top, and McIlroy won the event for the second time, Schauffele was second and Koepka tied for third. 

Johnson also has a strong feel for what it takes to win on courses in Florida. At the Honda Classic in March at Palm Beach Gardens, he tabbed Sungjae Im as one of his players to watch, and the 21-year-old notched his first PGA Tour win. 

Johnson noted that the South Korean had played poorly on the West Coast last year before surging after the Tour hit Florida, and he expected him to repeat the pattern. “He has been uninspiring this year out West, so look for good things in the weeks to come,” Johnson wrote. Im shot a final-round 66 to finish six-under par at PGA National.  

Now, Johnson, the first producer of “Inside the PGA Tour,” a longtime ABC Sports golf producer who has worked with Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Greg Norman, and the founder of the world’s top golf statistics database, has released his highly confident 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief picks. You can head here to see them

2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief expert analysis

Johnson has considered that McIlroy hasn’t recorded a PGA victory this calendar year, but he also knows the Northern Irishman is still playing extremely well. The 31-year-old leads the Tour in Scoring Average and is second in Driving Distance (320.2), and he has shot in the 60s in 18 of his past 24 rounds. He won the WGC-HSBC Champions in November and has finished at least tied for fifth in all five of his Tour events this season.

The golf stats guru also is well-versed in Dustin Johnson’s accomplishments. The 35-year-old has been ranked No. 1 for a total of 91 weeks since 2017 and is currently No. 5. The 2016 U.S. Open champion and former Player of the Year has 20 victories on the PGA Tour and has finished in the top 10 in two of his four events this season. He has struggled a bit around the greens since minor knee surgery, but he is 23rd on Tour in Putting Average.

Sal Johnson has been keeping a close eye on one-time phenom Rickie Fowler, who is having a roller-coaster season but says the time off has him refreshed. The 31-year-old has finished in the top 10 in two of his six events but missed the cut in two others. He has shot in the 60s in five of his eight rounds over his last three outings but scored 74 or worse in the first round each time. He has 79 birdies in 20 rounds with a scoring average of 70.5. 

The golf expert also knows Wolff has an unorthodox swing but has also seen that it gets results. The 21-year-old needed just three pro events to get his first PGA Tour victory, prevailing in the 3M Open less than two months after winning the individual title for Oklahoma State. Wolff is just the third player to win the NCAA individual title and a PGA Tour event in the same year, joining Ben Crenshaw and Tiger Woods. He is 21st on Tour in driving distance this season at 310.1 and 11th in strokes gained off the tee.     

How to make 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief predictions

Sal Johnson knows bookmakers are high on McIlroy and Johnson. But he also knows skins games can involve luck as well as skill. He has also identified a critical X-factor that makes one of the teams a must-back. You can find out what it is, and get his detailed breakdown and picks, right here

Who wins the TaylorMade Driving Relief skins competition 2020? And what critical X-factor will determine the winner? Visit SportsLine to see Sal Johnson’s full pick and analysis for the 2020 TaylorMade Driving Relief event, from the insider who nailed the Tour Championship and knows what it takes to win in Florida, and find out. 

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