Zach Johnson is currently in a league of his own. The Iowa native constantly sneaks under the radar of the highly talked about PGA pros, but quietly dominates them all with his consistency and fundamental golf skills. Johnson is utilizing these unique characteristics to compile a September to remember. On the final hole of the Deutsche Bank Championship, Johnson made a 25-foot birdie putt to secure the tenth and final spot on the President’s Cup team. And to top that stunning performance, he came from behind at the BMW Championship to win the last FedEx Cup playoff tournament of the year before the Tour Championship. Johnson shot a final day 6-under, 65 to overtake Jim Furyk for the tournament victory.
Furyk was the talk of Lake Forest, Illinois when he opened the BMW Championship with a record-breaking opening round 59. Only five players in PGA Tour history had ever broken 60 in an official tournament. Three of those five went on to win their respective tournaments; Furyk would not become the fourth. Johnson’s putting was too much for the rest of the field to handle, draining crucial putts while others faltered. His two consecutive birdie putts Monday on 16 and 17 put a lock on the tournament victory and made him one of the clear favorites for next week’s Tour Championship and FedEx Cup finale.
With his win on Monday at Conway Farms, Johnson sky-rocketed up the FedEx Cup standings, into the coveted top-five before the final points tournament of the year, next week at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia. With the fourth spot on the leaderboard, he has the opportunity to win the much sought-after $10 million dollar prize for the FedEx Cup victor.
“It’s hard to grasp the last two weeks of golf,” Johnson said. “It’s not like you have to win every week to win that FedEx Cup. You’ve just got to win at the right times, or play well at the right times. And I like the momentum I have for next week.”
Johnson notably sat out the first FedEx Cup playoff tournament of the year to attend his brother’s wedding. And even after missing out on the opportunity for valuable points, he has clawed his way up the standings, slowly and steadily, winning at the perfect times, as he noted in his post tournament comments. His 16-under 268 weekend in Illinois was a testament to that, meanwhile earning him a cool $1.44 million and bringing his career PGA tour earnings to over $30 million.
Plain and simple, just like his golf game and quiet rise to the top, Johnson summed up his feelings on his recent success in a few words:
"A great week, and a phenomenal day."
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