The Masters 2024 Golf Picks & Best Bets from PGA Expert Joe Champion: Scottie Scheffler cooks up something special

2021 champion Hideki Matsuyama applauds as Scottie Scheffler waves to the crowd during the final round of the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club.
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Joe Champion


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Golf and soccer analyst for Pickswise, while also an avid tennis fan. One of very few Milton Keynes Dons soccer fans. For Joe Champion media enquiries, please email
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The Majors have long been the 4 cornerstones of the golfing calendar but the importance of the Masters, the US PGA Championship, the US Open and the British Open is now greater than ever before. Where once we had the world rankings and season-long competitions to tell us who was the best, now there are just 4 tournaments which are able to bring together all the elite of the men’s game in one place. And what a place for the first instalment of four acts of genuinely top-level competition. Home to the Masters since 1934, Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, is one of the most recognizable venues in sport and a fitting backdrop to arguably the most prestigious tournament in golf.

Following tweaks to the 11th, 15th and 18th holes in 2022 and the 13th prior to last year’s event, Augusta has been left largely unchanged for the 2024 tournament with the exception of a slight lengthening of the par-5 second hole, bringing the total length up to 7,555 yards. Tournament organizers once attempted to ‘Tiger-proof’ this famous old layout but, for this year’s Masters, there may well have been discussions about how to ‘Scottie-proof’ it instead.

The Masters 2024 golf picks and predictions

Scottie Scheffler to win The Masters (+450)

Odds available at DraftKings Sportsbook at time of publishing.

While the world rankings might be flawed with LIV events not included, it’s difficult to argue that Scottie Scheffler is anything other than the best player in the world and he can show it by winning his 2nd Masters crown. In 2022, he won the Phoenix Open, the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the now-defunct WGC-Matchplay before claiming his first Major title at the hallowed Cathedral of the Pines. Last season, he won in Phoenix again, then he won his first Players Championship, then he putted poorly when finishing 10th as a defending Masters champion, a respectable effort given the noise and pressure that comes with being the most recent Green Jacket winner.

The remainder of last year saw Scheffler go winless in full-field events as a stone-cold putter undermined months of masterful, Woods-esque ball-striking before the flat-stick warmed up at just the right time. Scheffler’s decision to switch to a mallet-head putter this year following the Genesis Invitational has paid handsome dividends as he claimed the Arnold Palmer and the Players again before finishing runner-up in the Houston Open on his last start. A missed five-footer on the 18th at Memorial Park denied the Texas-based star a place in a Houston playoff but there’s no denying that he’s the one to beat and, given the struggles of many of his rivals, by some distance.

Plenty will be keen to take on Scheffler and some might like the chances of the top LIV players, including reigning champion Jon Rahm. However, Scheffler is made for Augusta. His tee-to-green game is, by some distance, the best on the PGA Tour – almost a shot better than all his competitors according to strokes-gained data – and his scrambling, which is such a valuable asset at Augusta, is in the top five. If it wasn’t for the putter, Scheffler would’ve won many more titles over the last 12 months but he’ll have to put up with just 17 top-10 finishes and 3 victories from 21 events since the last Masters. Augusta form of 19-18-1-10 is rock-solid and it’s hard to see him failing to contend. Bettors simply have to keep him on side even if he’s set to go off as the shortest-priced favorite in more than a decade.

Find out our golf expert’s The Masters best prop bets, including a nationality prop pick at +1600 odds!

Xander Schauffele to win The Masters (+1400)

Odds generally available at time of publishing.

Of Scheffler’s main rivals, Rahm’s LIV form is hard to weigh up, even though he was 4th in Miami last week. He’s going under the radar but the Masters is tough to win and defending champions have not fared well recently. Rory McIlroy never goes under the radar in pursuit of the career Grand Slam but it’s almost 10 years since his last Major win and the pressure will pile up as he drives down Magnolia Lane. Third in Texas last week was an improvement on indifferent form but the psychological hurdles presented by Augusta could again prove his undoing.

Majors machine Brooks Koepka is a huge threat as he goes in search of a first Green Jacket but, for an alternative to Scheffler, take a chance of Xander Schauffele finally realizing his potential in this sphere. Only Scheffler has been better from tee to green than Schauffele this year and that has been reflected in a run of 2024 form figures which read 10-3-9-54-4-25-2-5, while his Masters form figures of 50-2-17-3-MC-10 are equally encouraging. A lack of ruthlessness has held Schauffele back but 6 of the last 9 Masters winners were claiming their first Major title in the event and there’s every chance he adds his name to that list on Sunday.

Jordan Spieth’s Augusta record entitles him to respect while Ludvig Aberg and Wyndham Clark both have eyes on becoming the first debutant to win since Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979, although that lack of experience could prove their undoing.

We also have our 2024 The Masters first round leader predictions at +4500 odds!

Cameron Smith to win The Masters (+4000)

Odds available at FanDuel Sportsbook at time of publishing.

Joaquin Niemann, handed a special invite due to his brilliant worldwide form, has a chance but the top LIV golfer could prove to be Cameron Smith, who has a great Masters record.

The 2022 British Open champion found some form when a runner-up at LIV Hong Kong before having to withdraw before the 2nd round at Miami with food poisoning. However, if fit, his sparkling short game gives Smith a chance, just as it did when Patrick Reed won in 2018. The Australian has form figures of 5-51-2-10-3-34 from the last 6 Masters and should not be underestimated.

Cameron Young to win The Masters (+5500)

Odds available at FanDuel Sportsbook at time of publishing.

This tournament generally boils down to a battle between the best and Cameron Young is close to, if not already in that category. The New Yorker is the strongest maiden on the PGA Tour circuit and he wouldn’t be the first in recent memory to shed that tag on the grandest stage of all. This top-class ball-striker was a runner-up at the Valspar in his last start, 7th at the 2023 Masters on his 2nd Augusta appearance, and he’s finished in the top 8 in 4 of the last 7 Major championships.

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