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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Dustin Johnson
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
DJ is in a downward spiral and there's no telling when he's going to pull out. His earnings have declined two straight seasons and odds are, this season will make three. Of course, when the starting point is $9.4 million in earnings, it's pretty easy to drop from there. All joking aside, DJ's numbers have declined the past two seasons, but he's still above $8 million in earnings. It seems as though there's nothing DJ can do to live up to expectations as three consecutive $8 million seasons have left us wanting more. Perhaps it's the lack of majors that leads to this unmet expectations narrative. Whatever the case, DJ doesn't care about expectations, he'll just keep on chugging along making $8 million a season. There's always a chance that DJ could take his game to another level, but the competition is so strong right now that's it's highly unlikely.
Johnson was the guy that most people pegged as the one that could pull away from the pack because when he's on, he has more tools than anyone on the PGA Tour. Johnson's blistering start to the season only emboldened that notion as it looked like Johnson was becoming the "big one," where prior stood a "big three" or "big four." That was before the Masters and his now infamous slip on the stairs. That slip not only took him out of the Masters, but it squashed all the momentum that he had built and it took months to regain his form. Possibly the biggest question from last season is, what would have happened had Johnson not injured himself prior to the Masters? The answer will never be known, but it's clear that as long as he's healthy, Johnson will again be one of the best players on the PGA Tour again this season.
Johnson single-handedly reshaped the landscape of the PGA Tour last season. Entering the season, the talk surrounded the "Big-Three," but after Johnson won the U.S. Open and dominated the second-half of the season, the "Big-Three" had to make room for one more golfer. Johnson always had the talent, but his mental game lagged behind -- no longer as DJ has it all figured out now. It's easy to get too excited at the end of the season, just look back to last year and how everyone thought Jordan Spieth and Jason Day would dominate this season, but there's something about DJ getting the mental side of the game down that makes him very scary moving forward. His number is too high to justify a salary-cap selection this year, but he's in the mix for the overall No. 1 pick in a draft league.
The curious case of Dustin Johnson was seemingly solved last season, he was apparently under the influence of many things over the past few years, which would explain why he's been unable to ascend to the top-level of the PGA Tour. DJ has all the talent in the world, but he's been unable to find that next gear that would take him to the top of the world. Perhaps the time off will help him put things into perspective and he'll come back stronger than ever. That or he'll turn into a complete head case. With so many questions surrounding him entering this season, there's no way to justify a selection in a salary cap league. As far as draft leagues, well that's a tough one as well because we don't know how much he'll play during the 2014-15 season.
Dustin Johnson is that guy who looks the part, sometimes plays the part, but rarely nails the part. If that doesn't make sense, let's compare him to that number one draft pick in the NBA who goes for 30 and 10 one night then disappears off the stat sheet the next. You never know what you are going to get from DJ and it can be maddening. That's both an insult and a compliment in that we know how good he can be, but we don't get enough of that player throughout the year. One of these years he's going to blow up in a big way, but there's no way to tell if it will be this year. DJ's range in drafts might be wider than anyone on the PGA Tour. He could go in the top-10 or fall into the mid-20s. He's worth a look in salary cap formats as well -- if you think this is the year.
Another who finished in 10-20 range on the 2012 money list, Dustin Johnson's season was somewhat of a disappointment. Yes, he picked up another win and his earnings number from last season was impressive, but Johnson has shown so much ability during his brief career that multiple wins are expected each season - and maybe a major thrown into the mix. Johnson did miss a good chunk of the season last year, and it took a little time to get back on track, so a slight decline in his production last season was certainly excusable. But it's about time that Johnson takes the next step. There are a few signs that the next step might come this season, including a run of four consecutive top-10s to close out the regular season last year. Johnson has more upside than just about anyone on the PGA TOUR, which makes him an interesting selection in salary cap leagues. The price is steep, but the potential payout is worth the risk. Johnson could go anywhere from late in round one to late in round two in drafts.
Nearly everyone on the planet expected Johnson to have a breakout season in 2011, and by breakout we mean near the top of the money list with a major or two. What most didn't realize, though, was that Johnson was only one year removed from his breakout season in 2010, which was a year removed from his 2009 breakout season. Johnson has steadily climbed the ranks of the PGA Tour, and it appears as though an through-the-ceiling breakout is not going to happen, rather a slow and steady climb, and there's nothing wrong with that. Consider that his climb has taken him from just less than $2 million in 2008 to more than $4 million in 2010 and slightly back in 2011. It's the "slightly back" part that throws many off. Johnson's performance at the 2010 U.S. Open and PGA Championship put him in a new class - the next superstar class. Although he wasn't ready to go there last year, he might be ready to make that jump this year. He's a risk in a salary cap league, but he may be worth it. In draft leagues, he should go near the top of Round 1.
Johnson grabbed everyone's attention at the U.S. Open last year, but the momentum he built from the first three rounds at Pebble Beach quickly faded after a horrendous start to his final round. That setback could have sent him packing for self-pity hills, but instead he came back stronger than ever. The drama surrounding Johnson was just getting started, though, as his infamous "bunker" shot on the 72nd hole at the PGA Championship added to what was a troubling, yet productive season. Johnson's best days are still ahead, and 2011 should prove to be his best yet. Some would say 2010 was his breakout year, and that would be hard to argue, but he missed out on every close call last season, and until he seals the deal, he's yet to truly break through to the next level. Expect that breakthrough this year and for Johnson to capture a major. Johnson is a monster off the tee, ranking third in driving distance last season, but he pays for the distance in accuracy, ranking 172nd last year. He did, however, rank first in eagles per hole last season.
In only his second season on the PGA Tour, Johnson earned his second career victory and nearly hit $3 million in winnings. Johnson's rise up the ranks can be attributed to his putting: he moved from 77th in his rookie season to 29th in putting in 2009. With the improved flat stick, Johnson recorded five top-10 finishes, including one at the PGA Championship. Johnson will have a hard time outdoing himself in 2010, but fantasy owners should expect another productive season and a slight increase in Johnson's numbers.
Last year was a tale of three seasons for Johnson. The first part was promising as the rookie carded three top-15s in his first four events on the PGA Tour. The second part wasn't so good, 17 events and only one finish in the top-40. His season was not lost however as he captured his first win on tour in October at the Turning Stone Resort Championship. Johnson has the potential to improve on his rookie season, but it's more likely that his numbers will regress a little.
More Fantasy News
Returning to action in Australia
Withdraws from Hero World Challenge
Will return before December, at least
Undergoes knee procedure
Johnson finished the TOUR Championship at 10-over-par, tied for dead last in the field.