2024 PGA Cognizant Classic Predictions & Preview

Joe Berra

The PGA Tour heads to the East Coast this week for the Florida Swing at PGA National so we’ve got Cognizant Classic predictions coming up. 

Players will be battling it out for 500 FedEx Cup points and a winner’s prize of $1,620,000. Rory McIlroy is the clear frontrunner this week at The Palm Beaches, whilst The Sentry champion Chris Kirk will look to defend his crown. 

Could Chris Kirk be a good bet for Cognizant Classic predictions?

19 of the top 50 in the world rankings will be in attendance down in Florida this week. The final three holes are known as “The Bear Trap” meaning golfers could be in for a difficult end to their rounds. Be sure to check out our Cognizant Classic predictions and preview below!

2024 PGA Mexico Open Results

We witnessed yet another longshot winner at the Mexico Open last week as Jake Knapp shot 19-under to beat Finnish golfer Sami Valimaki by two strokes. 

Being priced at +4000 before the start of the tournament, Knapp was the joint-12th favorite to win the event. Despite not being as long as Hideki Matsuyama (+7000) at the Genesis Invitational, outsiders continue to prosper on the 2024 PGA Tour. 

It’s been a tough start to the new season for me with my golf picks. Let’s hope I can bounce back this time around with my Cognizant Classic predictions. You can view all of my selections over at my handicapper page, Ashlee Kiddell

2024 PGA Cognizant Classic Preview

When: Thursday, February 29th – Sunday, March 3rd, 2024

Where: PGA National Champion Course, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida

TV: Golf Channel / NBC / ESPN+

Purse: £9,000,000 (Winner gets $1,620,000)

Golf fans probably know this tournament as the Honda Classic, but it has since been renamed the Cognizant Classic. Contenders will be battling it out this week in order to qualify for a place at the next Signature Event in the Arnold Palmer Invitational. 

Market leader McIlroy won this tournament back in 2012, defeating both Tiger Woods and Tom Gillis by two strokes. He also finished as a runner-up in 2014, losing to Russell Henley in a playoff. The Northern Irishman is making his first appearance back at The Palm Beaches since 2018. 

This tournament was first played back in 1972 when it was known as Jackie Gleason’s Inverrary Classic. It was known as the Honda Classic from 1982 to 2023. 

Over the past five editions, the winner hasn’t been priced shorter than +3300 before the start of the tournament. That means another longshot victor may be on the cards again. 

PGA National Resort Course Information

PGA National Champion Course

Par: 71 / Yards: 7,147

Greens: Bermudagrass

2023 champion Kirk set the PGA National 72-hole record of 266 last year. He managed to earn his first victory on the PGA Tour since 2015, beating Eric Cole via a playoff. That ended a run of three consecutive years of a non-US winner. 

George and Tom Fazio originally designed the course, but it has since been reworked in both 1990 and 2014 by Jack Nicklaus. It was the home of the 1983 Ryder Cup and the 1987 PGA Championship. 

Past winners on the Champion Course haven’t necessarily displayed too much length with the driver. Instead, driving accuracy looks to be more significant. Other key statistics to consider seem to be SG: Tee-to-Green and Greens in Regulation (GIR). 

Weather forecasts mean that the wind should be fairly irrelevant on the opening day. However, it will likely pick up on Friday and into the weekend. 

Expert PGA Cognizant Classic Predictions for 2024

McIlroy (+700) is the favorite for Cognizant Classic predictions this week. He is the highest ranked golfer in the field and has won this tournament before so it’s not much of a surprise to see him as the market leader. 

However, he has had mixed form at PGA National, missing the cut twice between 2015 and 2018. That may mean his price of +700 isn’t offering the best of value. He has also struggled in both of his starts on the PGA Tour this season, finishing T66 at Pebble Beach and T24 at the Genesis Invitational. 

Kirk (+4500) can’t be ignored after winning the event last year. The last time this tournament saw back-to-back winners was in 1977-78 as Nicklaus retained his title. Still, Kirk is another contender who likes playing at PGA National. He finished in T7 in 2022 and T25 in 2021. He’ll be looking to build on his win earlier on in this season’s PGA Tour at The Sentry. Rankings of 10th in SG: Tee-to-Green, 21st in SG: Approach the green and 32nd in GIR percentage make for good reading as well. 

After securing a T3 finish in Mexico last week, Stephan Jaeger (+4500) is showing some promising value. He finished T3 at the Farmers Insurance Open last month, too, and will be looking to improve upon his T14 finish in last year’s edition of the Cognizant Classic. 

Top Contenders to Win the 2024 PGA Cognizant Classic

The value of 2022 champion Sepp Straka may be too good to pass up since he has pre-tournament odds of +4000. He clearly enjoys playing at PGA National, also finishing T5 in 2023. However, he has missed the cut in two of his four starts this season, including in his last appearance at the Genesis Invitational. His SG: Tee-to-Green rank of 76th may let him down this time around, however. 

2019 Open Championship winner Shane Lowry (+4000) looks like a popular pick in Cognizant Classic predictions this week. He secured a T5 finish in last year’s edition of the Cognizant Classic, but hasn’t won on the PGA Tour since that win at Royal Portrush. The Irishman finished as the runner-up in 2022 at PGA National. 

Like Straka, he seems to enjoy the course. That will be one of the only real reasons for backing him in Cognizant Classic predictions, though. That’s because he’s failed to finish inside the top 25 on the PGA Tour this season, also missing the cut at the AmEx. He ranks 58th in SG: Tee-to-Green, 65th in SG: Approach the green and 147th in GIR percentage. 

Longshots to Win the 2024 PGA Cognizant Classic

It’s time to look at some longshot candidates now for our Cognizant Classic predictions. Matthieu Pavon (+5000) has been playing some top-quality golf in 2024. He has form readings this season of 7-39-1-3, and became the first French golfer to win on the PGA Tour when he was crowned champion at the Farmers Insurance Open.

He competed with some top contenders in his last appearance at Pebble Beach, and managed to secure a third-placed finish. Ranking first in SG: Approach the green, third in SG: Tee-to-Green and 12th in GIR with a percentage of 74.75%, Pavon has a good shot at performing well in the Cognizant Classic as well. 

Key statistics this week look promising for another outside contender in Doug Ghim (+7000). He has performed well in both SG: Tee-to-Green (5th) and SG: Approach the green (18th). His rank of 35th in GIR percentage (72.22%) is solid too. At such a long price, he is showing some value. 

A huge longshot candidate this week is C.T. Pan (+16000). Fresh off a T3 finish at the Mexico Open last week, Pan enters this one in good form. However, he did miss the cut in both of his previous two appearances at both the Sony Open and Phoenix Open. Nevertheless, he has performed well at PGA National before, finishing T16 in 2022 and T3 in 2021. 

How will C.T. Pan perform in Cognizant Classic predictions?

2024 PGA Cognizant Classic Predictions – Outright Winner

I’m fading the favorites for my Cognizant Classic predictions here. Their prospects aren’t matching up to the value of the odds. 

Instead, I’ve selected three contenders with longer odds. Although they aren’t the biggest outsiders, all could result in a huge payout if at least one of them wins.

I’ve got a further two picks coming up to finish inside the top 10. You can find those selections below. 


2024 PGA Cognizant Classic Predictions – Top 10 Finish

The first of my top 10 finish picks for Cognizant Classic predictions is Ghim (+550). The stats are showing that he could perform well here. He’s missed the cut in his last two appearances at this event, but we’re hoping his better recent form will go against that trend. 

I’m also going for Matthieu Pavon to at least secure a top 10 finish. He has impressed on the 2024 PGA Tour, and his prospects look good for him here at PGA National. 

Check out all of my Cognizant Classic predictions this week at my handicapper page, Ashlee Kiddell

Best Bet: Doug Ghim (+550) & Matthieu Pavon (+450)

2024 PGA Cognizant Classic Odds

Here are the odds for the top 30 golfers at the 2024 PGA Cognizant Classic (subject to change):

  • Rory McIlroy (+700)
  • Cameron Young (+1800)
  • Eric Cole (+2000)
  • Russell Henley (+2300)
  • Byeong-Hun An (+2500)
  • Tom Kim (+2500)
  • Matt Fitzpatrick (+2800)
  • J.T. Poston (+3000)
  • Corey Conners (+3500)
  • Min Woo Lee (+3500)
  • Shane Lowry (+3500)
  • Keith Mitchell (+3500)
  • Sepp Straka (+4000)
  • Sungjae Im (+4000)
  • Daniel Berger (+4000)
  • Adam Svensson (+4000)
  • Chris Kirk (+4500)
  • Stephan Jaeger (+4500)
  • Luke List (+5000)
  • Tom Hoge (+5000)
  • Matthieu Pavon (+5000) 
  • Beau Hossler (+5000)
  • Christiaan Bezuidenhout (+5000)
  • Rasmus Hojgaard (+5500)
  • Justin Rose (+6000)
  • Jake Knapp (+6000)
  • Denny McCarthy (+6000)
  • Thorbjorn Olesen (+6500)
  • Rickie Fowler (+7000)
  • Doug Ghim (+7000)
About the Author
Joe Berra
Joe Berra
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Joe takes care of the bits and pieces that sometimes slip through the cracks of the sports world. Efficiency and consistency is what makes SportsHub.com different. JB helps keep Sports Hub’s content fresh and exciting, managing its many authors. From the New York area, Joe knew he had a knack for sports betting when his uncle was always asking him which side he was on as a young boy. His meticulous approach to the numbers formed his career path as a professional handicapper. Joe is sometimes called Jimmy Bagpipes, JB or Mr. B.