Predicting and projecting Friday’s cutline at the 2023 3M Open; can Justin Thomas keep his FedEx Cup hopes alive?
The penultimate event on the 2022/23 PGA Tour schedule is taking place in Minnesota this week at the 2023 3M Open with some of the tour’s top stars battling to keep their hopes of making this season’s FedEx Cup Playoffs alive.
The PGA’s decision to amend its playoff criteria beginning in 2023 has left a select group of perennial FedEx Cup contenders scrambling to just make the first leg of the playoffs as the regular season draws to a close in the next two weeks.
Two-time major champion, Justin Thomas, finds himself currently amongst that group of players on the outside looking in with less than two events remaining. Last year’s PGA Champion has had an uncharacteristic season to date with just four top 15 finishes or better prior to this week’s 3M Open.
Coming off a disappointing week at last week’s Open Championship, Thomas is looking to get things turned in the right direction with his playoff and Ryder Cup hopes hanging in the balance.
Can Justin Thomas keep playoff hopes alive at 3M Open?
Thomas has not only made the FedEx Cup Playoffs in each of the last seven seasons, but he has also advanced to the Tour Championship at East Lake every year dating back to 2016. That streak of incredible consistency is in jeopardy in 2023.
The 2021 PLAYERS Champion entered the week outside of the key top 70 number who will advance to the first leg of this season’s playoffs at the FedEx St. Jude Championship in a few weeks’ time.
Through 18 holes of this year’s 3M Open, Thomas has slipped a further three places in the standings from 75th to a projected 78th. An opening 69 at TPC Twin Cities leaves the 30-year-old sitting at two-under par heading into Friday and with work still to be done as he looks to keep his playoff hopes alive for this season.
With new putter in tow this week in Minnesota, Justin Thomas is off to a solid start at the 3M Open with his season hanging in the balance, but where exactly does he stand in regards to this week’s projected cut?
Projecting Friday’s 3M Open Cutline
With TPC Twin Cities yielding a little over a half stroke under par to the field on average on Thursday, per Data Golf, we can expect a relatively low cutline at this year’s 3M Open on Friday.
As things stand, with the majority of the field having completed their first round on Thursday, Data Golf is projecting the cutline to fall at -3 (42.1%) at this season’s penultimate regular season event.
The projected cut moving in either direction is a relative coin flip as things currently stand with a mark of -4 being given around a 22% chance; with -2 currently sitting around 26%.
That would leave Justin Thomas needing to put together another solid round on Friday in order to feel safe about his chances of sticking around for the weekend in Minnesota.
As things stand, a cutline of -3 would see other notable names including Sungjae Im (-1), Sepp Straka (E), and Cameron Young (E) all heading home early this week.