2017 Masters: Five Past Winners to Keep an Eye On

Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /
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Zach Johnson — 2007

At No. 49 in the world, Johnson has begun to fade over the last season-and-a-half or so, but it would be a mistake to forget about this veteran as the year’s first major approaches. The Georgia resident has been around the block more than a few times, giving him the potential to shoot some truly impressive rounds when the conditions are right.

Ten years ago, Johnson held off a charging Tiger Woods, among other competitors, to win the second title of his PGA Tour career at the 2007 Masters. He’s picked up ten more wins since that week, including an Open Championship at St Andrews, yet struggled to establish a consistent track record at Augusta National, never again making a serious challenge for a green jacket.

It may be a long shot, but that could change this week. Johnson flashed plenty of form in his last start at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, taking down solid competitors like Matt Kuchar and Brendan Steele in the group stage before falling to eventual winner Dustin Johnson in the round of 16. Combine that form with his always impressive short game, and ZJ could surprise some people this week. A third major title would be a nice way to enter what will likely be his last few years as a top player.