The Top 10 most improved players on the PGA Tour in 2021/22

Rory McIlroy, Tour Championship,Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports
Rory McIlroy, Tour Championship,Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports /
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PGA Tour, 2021-22 PGA Tour Season, Golf, Rankings, Rory McIlroy
Tyler Duncan, Barbasol Championship, Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports /

7. Tyler Duncan (1.09)

At age 33 and having completed his fifth full PGA Tour season, Duncan is probably too old to be considered the next big breakout star. But in 2022, this Purdue University graduate and 10-year pro looked like someone who had found himself.

Duncan’s 70.696 stroke average was 1.09 strokes better than the 71.788 he produced just one season earlier. One hundred sixty-seventh on the scoring list in 2020-21, he jumped all the way to 69th this season.

That improvement didn’t always show up on the leaderboard. Duncan’s best finish was a tie for twelfth at the RBC Heritage back in April. In fact, 2021-22 could be viewed as a season of missed opportunities for Duncan, who despite his rise up the scoring charts failed to crack the million dollar mark in seasonal earnings.

Here’s the data for Duncan.

                                             2020-21                2021-22                Change

Off The Tee                         0.136                     0.330                     0.194

Approaches                        0.042                     0.133                     0.091

Around the Green           -0.281                     0.036                     0.317

Putting                               -0.472                   -0.092                    0.380

Like McCarthy, Duncan actually improved his performance in all four Strokes Gained categories, that tangible improvement measuring out to nearly one full stroke.

Also like McCarthy, the biggest single improvement came on the greens, where Duncan improved from gawdawful (-0.472 in 2021) to modestly below average (-0.92) this year.

He also turned his recovery game, a solid negative in 2021, into a modest positive in 2022, picking up another third of a stroke in the process.