Daniel Berger could have – should have, perhaps – been a two-time champion in 2017. He did everything he needed to do to catch Jordan Spieth on Sunday at the Travelers Championship. Spieth had a tough greenside bunker shot in their playoff, and, well…the rest is history.
Add Daniel Berger’s name to the list of people who got “Spiethed”. It’s not like it won’t happen again, to someone else, on some massive stage. But recognize Berger for what he is – a supremely talented golfer, who is just now starting to truly come into his own on the PGA TOUR.
A winner in each of the past two PGA TOUR seasons, Berger enters these Playoffs in outstanding position. He’s made it to the Tour Championship twice, but never cracked the top ten in the points race. With a clear path to Atlanta, will that help settle the nerves, or will it add more pressure to the 24-year-old’s shoulders?
The pressure is real, of course. But that’s nothing new for Berger at this point. Perhaps if this was his rookie season, we might expect a little less, but once he internalizes these expectations for himself, that becomes much less of an issue.
Ranked 27th in strokes gained tee-to-green, and 19th in adjusted scoring, Berger is more than capable of picking off a win, maybe even two, in these playoffs. Timing is everything, but he’s more than ready to take the next step.