NORTON, Mass. – Tiger Woods said Thursday he thought he played well at last week’s Northern Trust, his first FedEx Cup Playoffs event since 2013.
His third-worst putting week of the season erased a lot of good work tee to green, and Woods ultimately fell from 20th to 25th in the points race. That means he’s getting closer to the Tour Championship bubble entering this week’s Dell Technologies Championship.
Woods said he hadn’t played much golf since Sunday and spent a majority of the time with his kids at home in Jupiter, Fla. He did get some work in on the greens, but Woods didn’t seem to think his putting problems in New Jersey were anything to worry about. Just one of those bad weeks.
“Golf-wise, hardly anything,” Woods said. “I’ve just been with the kids, with them doing all their after school curriculum, all those activities, so I really haven’t got much golf in.”
In his prime, Woods would have been practicing four to five hours per day going into a week like this, along with 10-mile runs and multiple lifting sessions. That was before he had kids, when he was healthy enough to work as long and hard as he wanted to.
“I putted for a little bit,” Woods said. “Not a lot. More than anything it was just getting rest, doing my lifts and driving the car a lot.”
This is the second of three tournaments for Woods over a three-week stretch, in which he’s hoping to play five tournaments over the course of six weeks including the Tour Championship in Atlanta and Ryder Cup in Paris.
Woods showed up Thursday morning a day before his 8:51 a.m. Round 1 tee time with Marc Leishman and Chez Reavie. He removed his sunglasses before facing the media and a blinding sun overhead, fielding questions before his 12:10 p.m. Thursday pro-am at TPC Boston. Woods won at this course in 2006 and has only finished outside the top 11 twice in nine career starts, including a T-65 his last time here in 2013.
This is Woods’ 16th start of the season and he’s already committed to next week’s BMW Championship. That will make for the most events he’s played in one year since 2012, and he’s had a legitimate chance to win four or five of them.
He has at least two more chances this season to win for the first time in five years, and it’s highly likely he’ll be in the mix this week if the ballstriking is close to what it was in New Jersey.
The main thing for Woods is that he he’s getting experience in the hunt again. And he’s looking for more starting this week in Boston as the comeback season nears its end.
“The thing for me is just keep getting there in the mix,” Woods said. “Keep getting there on that back nine with a chance to win. I responded well at Valspar. Made a mistake there at Bay Hill and the Players. Even at the Open Championship. But I learned from those and really did well at the PGA. Just keep giving myself enough opportunities. I’m not going to win them all, but in order to win them you’ve got to be there. I’ve been there enough this year and obviously want more of them.”
Playing well this week and next would give Woods another opportunity to do just that in the Tour Championship at East Lake.