Tiger Woods using new TaylorMade putter for Round 1 of Quicken Loans National

Keyur Khamar/PGA TOUR

Tiger Woods using new TaylorMade putter for Round 1 of Quicken Loans National

PGA Tour

Tiger Woods using new TaylorMade putter for Round 1 of Quicken Loans National

POTOMAC, Md. – Tiger Woods is using a new putter for Round 1 of the Quicken Loans National as he tries to break out of a self-described vicious cycle on the greens.

Woods experimented with a mallet-style TaylorMade Ardmore 3 model during practice rounds and put it in the bag Thursday at TPC Potomac for his 1:20 p.m. Eastern tee time with Bill Haas and Marc Leishman.

Woods has been using a Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS putter all season, which he had in hand for 13 of his 14 career major wins. It worked well and helped him contend at the Honda Classic, Valspar Championship and Arnold Palmer Invitational this spring. Woods hit a wall on the greens after the Florida swing and wasted one of his best career ballstriking performances with one of his worst-ever putting weeks at the Memorial.

He has now fallen to 89th on Tour in strokes gained: putting.

“I’m trying to find something that I can feel again, like the swing of the putter, getting my body in the right positions and seeing the lines again,” Woods said. “You know, it’s just one of those things, once I start to get the ball rolling on my lines, then I’ll be back to putting like I was. I just have not been rolling it on my lines. And then on top of that, when they don’t roll on lines, then I have a hard time seeing my lines and it’s a vicious cycle. And I’m just trying to get out of that cycle.”

Woods tried out a ton of TaylorMade putters last week in the Bahamas and liked the fact that the Ardmore has a little more swing than the blade putter he’s been using. It also has grooves, unlike the Scotty Cameron, which gives the ball more roll off the face.

It’s a drastic change for Woods, who is hitting the ball well enough to contend most weeks. With a small field short on star power, the Quicken Loans represents Woods’ best chance to win again since this comeback started. And he’s hoping a new flatstick will help get him over the hump and put all the pieces together this week in Maryland.

“I’m pretty excited the way I’ve hit the golf ball,” Woods said. “I’ve done some things that I haven’t done in over a decade, and so to be able to hit the golf ball as well as I have hit it, if I have the same putting stroke I had earlier in the year with the ball-striking I’ve had, that would be where I want to get to. Just got to put both those things together at the same time.”

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