Two of the longest hitters in the field will play the first two rounds together this week as the PGA Tour returns to Minnesota for the second straight year. Here are featured groups to watch during the first two rounds of the 3M Open outside Minneapolis, where Dustin Johnson will look to bounce back from a rough week at the Memorial as he headlines this week’s field (Note: specific tee times released Tuesday afternoon):
Dustin Johnson, Tony Finau, Tommy Fleetwood
Johnson won the Travelers Championship last month, then ballooned to consecutive rounds of 80 last week at Muirfield Village to finish near the bottom of the pack. He’ll try to rebound in a marquee grouping that will include Finau, the 36-hole leader last week in Ohio who ultimately dropped back to an eighth-place result. Rounding out the trio will be Fleetwood, who is making his return from quarantine in his first start since The Players was canceled after the opening round.
Matthew Wolff, Max Homa, Branden Grace
Wolff broke through at this event last year, winning his maiden Tour title with an eagle on the 72nd hole. He returns this week as defending champ, having finished second three weeks ago in Detroit. Joining him will be Homa, who had three top-10s earlier this season and like Wolff snagged his first Tour title last summer, and Grace, who is making his tournament debut and remains the only player to shoot a 62 in competition at a men’s major.
Brooks Koepka, Keith Mitchell, Charles Howell III
Koepka remains in search of some form as he battles a nagging left knee injury, with just one top-10 finish since last year’s Tour Championship. That includes a rough double-dip in Ohio, as he missed the Workday cut and finished T-62 at the Memorial. Mitchell earned his maiden Tour title last year at the Honda Classic and broke a run of three straight missed cuts with a T-22 finish last week, while Howell remains in search of his first top-40 finish since the Sony Open in January.
Bubba Watson, Paul Casey, Pat Perez
Watson is making his tournament debut at TPC Twin Cities, having rallied for a T-32 finish last week at the Memorial despite an opening-round 78. Casey is making his third start since the Tour returned from break, with a T-32 finish at the Travelers followed by a missed cut last week, while Perez has made three of four cuts since returning including a T-35 finish at the Workday Charity Open in his most recent start.