News & ToursAugust 18, 2015

It's imperative that Tiger Woods plays the fall PGA Tour schedule. Here are three reasons why.

The news of Tiger Woods playing this week's Wyndham Championship has been treated like the Beatles arriving at JFK in 1964. In truth, it's more akin to Huey Lewis and the News performing at your local county festival in 2015.

Yet, many believe Woods still has a comeback bid in him, which, if we're continuing our music comparisons, would be Tina Turner's Private Dancer album (I'm sure Tiger is thrilled at such a parallel).

Competing at Greensboro is the first step in that return, but it will be for naught if it's Tiger's final tour appearance in 2015. If Woods really wants to get things going, he needs to clear his itinerary and plan to play in the PGA's fall events.

It's a juncture of the calendar that's been mostly foreign to Woods, as, historically, he's spent this time away from the sport. Of course, the Tiger of the past and the one of the present reside on separate ends of the golf spectrum.

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Which is what makes the next three months critical for Woods' long-term outlook. Here are three reasons why Tiger needs to play the PGA Tour's fall schedule:

Stats prove that a strong fall equates to season-long success

It's easy to discount golf after the Ryder or Presidents Cups. Admittedly, the tournaments are second-tiered, and the fields reflect this notion. Moreover, on the sports calendar, golf takes a backseat to playoff baseball, college and pro football and the beginning of hockey and basketball.

That's not to say these events are unimportant; anything but. The current FedEx Cup standings -- the one Tiger is desperately trying to break into this week -- are a microcosm of players who've taken advantage of the fall campaign. Particularly, Bubba Watson, Jimmy Walker, Robert Streb, Patrick Reed and Charley Hoffman are guys who parlayed early-season wins into a top-12 ranking.

For Woods to reenter golf's conversation off his game's merit, rather this simply his name, the fall events are the platform to spur this change.

Autumn has served Tiger well in the past

And we do mean past.

Nevertheless, Woods had made his presence felt; specifically in his 1996 venture. In eights tournaments from September-on, Tiger notched two victories, along with three other top-five finishes.

Granted, the tour schedule had a different configuration; moreover, we'd be remiss if failing to mention what constitutes a "season" in golf has been radically altered. However, all Woods was able to do with his impressive '96 fall is carry that success to the spring, where he won the 1997 Masters by 12 shots. So yeah, I'd say that worked out.

Tiger has said he needs as many reps as he can get

"Well, it just takes time," Woods said after missing the cut at the PGA Championship. "Unfortunately, I hadn't played that much the last couple years, and I'm finally able to start playing. And unfortunately, I'm missing out on -- potentially missing out on the playoffs."

He's right, including the postseason part. Unless he wins this week, Woods will be at home watching the FedEx Cup. If he wants to prevent this from happening next year, he needs to start getting some competitive swings under his belt.

"I just need to get more consistent in tournament golf," Woods continued. "Only way you can do that is by playing."

Correct. Luckily for Woods, such a platform exists. Whether he takes advantage of this opportunity remains to be seen.


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