Four days after the Masters, the PGA Tour is back at it with the fifth Signature Event of the season: the 2024 RBC Heritage. Scottie Scheffler and Rory McIlroy headline a stacked field at the picturesque Harbour Town Golf Links, on Hilton Head Island.

Geographically, Harbour Town isn't too far from the gusty Augusta, but the vibes should be quite different aside the serene South Carolina sea. (The PGA Tour is also hosting an opposite-field event this week, the Corales Puntacana Championship, in the Dominican Republic.)

The 69-player, no-cut event will give out $3.6 million to the winner from an elevated $20 million purse (same as the Masters), plus 700 FedEx Cup points. 54 of those 69 players competed at Augusta.

28 of the top 30 players in the Official World Golf Ranking are on hand, including top-five Masters finishers Ludvig Aberg, Max Homa, Tommy Fleetwood, and Collin Morikawa. Is an emotional letdown coming?

Last year, Matt Fitzpatrick outlasted Jordan Spieth in a three-hole playoff. In 2022, Spieth beat Cantlay in a playoff.

Here's what else to know for the PGA Tour's signature event.

PGA Tour: 2024 RBC Heritage preview

Course notes

Harbour Town is a short par-71, 7,213 yards. It's defined by narrow, tree-lined fairways and some of the smallest greens on the PGA Tour.

While Augusta demands imagination and variety, the emphasis here is precise, station-to-station golf. Accuracy trumps distance out of the tee box. Can you put your approach near the hole?

The favorite: Scottie Scheffler (+450)

Scheffler was ready to leave the Masters if his wife entered labor, but he appears to be staying in the RBC field. (There are no alternates, so he isn't holding a place from somebody else by waiting.)

Scheffler will be shooting for his fourth win in five PGA Tour starts. We're still awaiting that first round under-par of 2024. In other words, I don't think we need to worry about the state of his golf game.

That said, 2023 Masters champ Jon Rahm admitted exhaustion at Harbour Town last year.

Scheffler has only one career RBC start, a T11 in 2023. His game happens to suit the course; elite irons, sharp wedges. Of course, his game suits every course.


Rory McIlroy outright (+1200): McIlroy hasn't played the RBC since 2020. He was ho-hum at the Masters (T22), though he should be mentally fresher than a few peers.

But, after spending his Tuesday dispelling LIV rumors, he has a chip on his shoulder for the event. Rory's flying a bit under the radar.

Will Zalatoris Top 5 (+2800): Willy Z's runner-up at Riviera was a hugely encouraging result post-back surgery. Since then, Zalatoris has carded two top-10s, including ninth-place at the Masters.

Zalatoris' world-class ball-striking should behoove him at the RBC Heritage. The 27-year-old ranks eighth in strokes gained: approach in 2024.

Jordan Spieth Top 10 (+260):  A refreshing element of the Masters was watching bona fide stars — Homa, Morikawa, Aberg, etc. — trying to hang with the clear-cut best player. That tier of stars has underwhelmed in 2024. For the most part, the winners have been Scheffler or longshots.

The RBC, as an odd Masters comedown/signature event hybrid, presents a convenient opportunity for the secondary stars to make a statement before the PGA Championship (May 16-19).

Spieth has been all over the place outside of a 10th-place finish at the Valero Texas Open — and even there he was intentionally hitting on to the clubhouse roof. His +9 at Augusta didn't inspire confidence.

But, like TPC San Antonio, Spieth has comfortably torn up Harbour Town. He has five top-25 finishes in seven starts. If not now, when?

On that note, Patrick Cantlay has five top-7s in six RBC starts. His playing partner at the upcoming Zurich Classic of New Orleans, Xander Schauffele, didn't make a Sunday move at Augusta, but he put forth another respectable showing. He has seven top-10s, including four in his last five starts.

Schauffele's game profiles well for Harbour Town, in part because his Achilles heel (putting) can be mitigated by the smaller greens. He's won the 2022 Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands — an apt corollary for Harbour Town. He finished fourth at the '23 RBC.

Russell Henley — One and Done (+5500): Henley is your classic Point A to Point B golfer. He's one of the better putters out there.

The Masters T38 wasn't inspiring, but Henley registered one of his three fourth-place finishes of 2024 the week before at the Valero.

Other plausible contenders: Cameron Davis, Christiaan Bezuidenhout, Shane Lowry, Brian Harman, Corey Conners