Bubble boy Rickie Fowler makes FedEx Cup Playoffs by skin of his teeth

Rickie Fowler tees on the ninth hole during Round 2 of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at the Detroit Golf Club in Detroit on Friday, July 29, 2022.
Rickie Fowler tees on the ninth hole during Round 2 of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at the Detroit Golf Club in Detroit on Friday, July 29, 2022. /

Rickie Fowler becomes last man standing, narrowly making the Fedex Cup Playoffs with the final spot, No. 125, heading into the FedEx St. Jude Championship this weekend.

Rickie Fowler has probably benefited the most from the exodus of players to LIV. He’s missed several cuts this year on the PGA Tour, including last week at the Wyndham Championship, which seemed to knock him out of contention to play the Fedex Playoffs. He started out at Wyndham in the 133rd spot, but due to the defection of 10 players to the LIV Golf league, he jumped 10 spots to No. 123 at the outset of the week.


A musical chair last-minute scramble at Wyndham saw several players knock themselves out of the top 125 including Austin Smotherman, Brian Stuard, and Justin Lower, leaving Fowler in a safer position at No. 124. But the shock win by Joohyung Kim gave the Wyndham winner conditional Tour status and knocked Fowler down a peg to bubble man status. For the full breakdown, check out this detailed analysis.


The 33-year-old Fowler is clearly in a two-year funk, symbolized by the danger of almost missing the Playoffs a second year in a row. Still, by the skin of his teeth, Fowler managed to make it.

The FedEx spot also guarantees him an opportunity to play The Players, where he won in 2015, his biggest accomplishment, and a tournament he wouldn’t have qualified for if it weren’t for the FedEx position. That win, along with his 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open title and an extra year due to the COVID pandemic gave him a Tour exemption through 2023. Luck has certainly helped the five-time PGA Tour winner to get him through another year.

Last year was the first time that the new father (whose daughter, Maya, was born last November) had missed the FedEx Playoffs after 11 straight trips, sitting well outside the bubble at spot No. 134. Fowler’s best finish this season occurred at the CJ Cup last fall by placing T3. But seven missed cuts have continued the feeling of a slump for the charismatic and talented golfer, one of the most likable players on the Tour.

Even if he barely made it, Rickie Fowler can shake off the embarrassment of missing the FedEx Cup Playoffs two years in a row and can look forward to advancing to the postseason opener, the FedEx St. Jude Championship in Memphis, Tennessee. The Rickie Fowler Tracker fans can breathe a sigh of relief for their beloved golfer.