U.S. Open: Top 10 sleepers for Erin Hills

Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports /
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U.S. Open
Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports /

Jason Dufner — No. 65

Dufner has yet to notch a top 10 finish in 2017, but with 24 consecutive major starts under his belt, he’ll bring a ton of experience into this year’s U.S. Open. The Auburn product knows a thing or two about contending on the big stage, and while he’s suffered some tough losses in the past, his unflappable demeanor makes him an intriguing dark horse pick.

Dufner has notched a top 10 finish on three different U.S. Open courses: Olympic, Merion and Oakmont. Always a superb player with an iron in his hands, his ball striking skills have really come in handy over the years, and he’s turned in a similarly solid performance this season, ranking 48th on the PGA TOUR in strokes gained: approach-the-green. He also sits at 25th in scoring average, a testament to his consistently solid play. He hasn’t contended for any trophies this year, but with eight top 25 finishes in 13 events, finding the first pages of the leaderboard hasn’t been an issue for him.

Dufner won’t be one of the main frontrunners come U.S. Open week, but with his win at the 2013 PGA Championship, we know he’s capable of some inspired golf when the pressure’s on. Don’t forget about him.