Jordan Spieth was absolute money before the FedEx Cup playoffs, posting more wins than MCs. He had a ridiculous lead in money rankings and FedEx points.
However, call it exhaustion after a long stellar season. Or label it as the utter frustration that golf imparts, as when you cruise nicely on autopilot–until you don’t. That said, Spieth sounds definitely bewildered at his recent performances.
Spieth curiously changed irons before missing the first cut at the Barclays. He then switched back but it didn’t help. But his current struggles involve driver, wedges and putting greens. In fact, the widely acknowledged best putter Spieth was ranked 99th (Rory McIlroy was last) in Strokes Gained: Putting after two rounds at the Deutsche Bank.
His 73 in the second round of the Deutsche Bank Championship gave him a 2nd straight missed cut–the first time Spieth has done so on the PGA Tour.
“I’ve done a lot of things positively this year,” Spieth said. “This is something I’ve never done that’s negative. Whatever is going on, normally my mental game is a strength of mine. And it’s something I feel like I have an advantage over other players on. These past two weeks it was a weakness for me. And I’ve just got to go back and reassess how to remain positive.”
Spieth calls it “self-talk,” and what he seems to be hearing is not what he heard during his fantastic run earlier in the year.
“Sometimes it happens over the course of five holes, sometimes it happens over nine holes,” Spieth said of the negative thoughts. “And the good news is that it can flip the other way very quickly. And that’s what I’m taking out of this.”
“I need to walk with some cockiness in my step these next two tournaments,” Spieth said. “That’s going to be a big stage. I don’t think I have to fix much in my game other than really work hard on my putting into Conway and then mentally I can control that.”
Crazy silver lining: Spieth regained his #1 World Ranking even with the two MCs. That is until Friday, when McIlroy leapfrogs his young counterpart. As always with the OWGR, go figure…