WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The Wells Fargo Championship might be missing big-name players like Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler, but don't let that fool you. This year's tournament is loaded with top players.
"I think it's a terrific field," said former PGA Tour caddie Brian Mull of Wilmington. "And it opens things up for guys on that next tier if you are talking about a Jon Rahm or a Patrick Reed or Phil Mickelson, and guys that are capable of winning any week, but they are bumped up as the favorites."
The PGA Tour is returning to Wilmington for the first time since 1971, and the field is full of home grown talent.
"Young guys like Harold Varner, a guy from East Carolina, a Gastonia native. He is a very young exciting player. He won the Australian PGA," Mull said. "Gracin Murray from Raleigh is a rookie on the PGA Tour, and there are guys with more familiar names like Bill Hass from Wake Forest, Webb Simpson from Wake Forest, Carl Pettersson, an N.C. State grad who has won a few times on the PGA Tour as well."
But all eyes will be on world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, who will be playing for the first time since pulling out of the Masters with a back injury. Mull said he believes Johnson is one of the favorites to be in contention Sunday afternoon.
"I saw a comment from him the other day saying that he's hitting the ball better than he was before he got hurt and that is pretty scary for the field because he is playing as well anyone has played at the highest level consistently," Mull said.
Players have until April 28 at 5 p.m. to commit to the Wells Fargo Championship.