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What should we expect from Tiger Woods at Farmers and beyond?
Farrell Evans, Josh Sens and Ryan Asselta discuss expectations for Tiger Woods in his first tour event of 2018.
By Josh Sens
Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Here we go again. After multiple surgeries and myriad aborted comeback attempts, Tiger Woods is set to return to action once more with his first official PGA Tour start in a year. As with most things Tiger-related, his scheduled appearance at the Farmers Insurance Open has aroused a range of reactions, from the highly skeptical to the wildly optimistic. But where do you stand? Are you an ardent Tiger believer or hardened Tiger doubter? Take this short quiz to find out.

1. It's been nine months since Tiger's back fusion. You believe:

A. It worked. Dude was bending like Gumby at the Hero World Challenge in December, without a stitch of pain. (10 pts)
B. Too early to call. If there's one thing we've leaned about Tiger over the years, it's hard to be bullish about any part of his health. (5 pts)
C. Please. He's a 42-year-old trapped in the body of an 82-year-old. Just a matter of time before he's wincing again. (0 pts)

2. At the Hero World Challenge, Tiger's short game was under scrutiny, with the occasional chunky chip rearing its ugly head. You saw:

A. The same wizard as ever, just shaking off some rust. (10 pts)
B. A player contending with grabby Bermuda grass. Everyone has a tough time chipping off that stuff. (5 pts)
C. A yips-afflicted graybeard, producing more chunks than a pint of Ben & Jerry's. (0 pts)

Tiger's latest comeback attempt begins Thursday. Buckle up.

Getty Images

3. At Torrey Pines this week, where Woods has won eight times as a pro, you predict:

A. Yet another Tiger victory, this one even more heroic than the U.S. Open he captured on a broken leg. (10 pts)
B. A solid top-10 finish, and an important stepping stone on his return to form. (5 pts)
C. Fairways missed by yards. Putts missed by inches. And a cut missed by a mile. (0 pts)

4. In your view, Tiger's decision to ditch Chris Como and go without a swing coach represents:

A. A wise choice by the greatest natural talent of all time. No one knows what Tiger needs more than Tiger. (10 pts)
B. A surprising move, but a smarter one than sticking with Como. (5 pts)
C. The benighted arrogance of a has-been whose only hope is to go back to Butch, which will never, ever happen. (0 pts)

5. The way you see it, Tiger's early 2018 schedule — three weeks after Torrey he'll play the Genesis Open at Riviera — is:


A. Genius. These are exactly the tournaments he should be playing to work his way back to his rightful place atop the game. (10 pts)
B. Not overly ambitious, but sensible enough for a guy just starting on the comeback trail. (5 pts)
C. Too light and/or predictable. Yet more evidence of how little trust he has in his health and his game. (0 pts)

6. The latest iteration of Tiger's swing is:

A. Powerful, fluid, beautiful, efficient. (10 pts)
B. A work in progress, but a promising one. (5 pts)
C. A feeble facsimile of peak Tiger, doomed to generate a two-way miss. (0 pts)

7. In Tiger's body language, you perceive:

A. A leaner, meaner player, moving with cat-like grace and cocksure swagger. (10 pts)
B. A reasonably healthy middle-age man with a few bumps and bruises but ready access to world-class trainers and a well-equipped home gym. (5 pts)
C. The world's most oldest 42-year-old, stepping gingerly so as not to tweak his knee or throw out his back. (0 pts)

Tour & News
Tour Confidential: How important is Tiger's performance at Torrey Pines in the grand scheme of this comeback?

8. Looking ahead to Tiger's 2018 season, you predict:

A. Multiple wins, including a major. (10 pts)
B. Enough strong showings to give his fans continued hope. (5 pts)
C. A dizzying downward spiral, culminating in yet another trip to the operating room. (0 pts)

9. When Tiger speaks at a press conference, you hear:

A. A calm and confident superstar, ready to resume his ass-whooping ways. (10 pts)
B. A sober realist, humbled by setbacks but mature in his outlook, happy just to be competing again. (5 pts)
C. The sorry platitudes of a rundown veteran who knows he has no chance of keeping up with the young'uns. (0 pts)

10. In your opinion, Tiger's 2017 DUI and return to rehab:

A. Stoked his competitive fire and fueled his resolve to prove the doubters wrong. (10 pts)
B. Got him to address a problem and, hey, that can't be bad. (5 pts)
C. Another big blow to his already battered psyche and self-esteem. (0 pts)

11. Many years from now, we will look back at this phase of Tiger's career as the time when he:

A. Broke Jack's record for most career major wins. (10 pts)
B. Eased into a role as respected elder statesman and ceremonial golfer. (5 pts)
C. Finally called it quits, riding his E-Z-GO into the Jupiter Island sunset. (0 pts)

RESULTS:

90-110 points: You have the unshakable faith of an evangelist, and a Tiger altar in your home.

70-89: In Tiger you trust, though you suffer from periodic pangs of doubt.

50-69: A Tiger agnostic, you're still reviewing the evidence.

30-49: Like a 10-year-old contemplating Santa Claus, you want to believe but suspect a Tiger resurgence is too good to be true.

10-29: If he wins the Masters, you might reconsider.

0-9: Geez, what did Tiger ever do to you?

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