Kenny Perry is 53.


It would be a mistake to count him out of this week’s Players Championship.

Perry is in the tournament this week through the exemption given to the previous season’s winner of the Constellation Senior Players. The exemption began in 2007, and Perry might have the best chance to contend of any of the previous Senior Players champions who got another chance at the TPC Sawgrass Players Stadium Course.

“I’ve got some experience here, and I’ve had chances to win,” he said on Tuesday. “I’m looking forward to it.”

Perry said he’s just as long as he was 10 years ago when he was still winning on the PGA Tour, and at 290.2 yards per measured drive, he is third on the Champions Tour in driving distance.

The Players isn’t about distance but Perry has some numbers for that too. He’s 12th in greens in regulation on the senior circuit (.743) and 53rd in driving accuracy (.684).

“This is more of a placement golf course,” he said. “You’ve got to figure out a way to get to the last three holes, then make birdie at No. 16 and survive 17 and 18.”

Perry said the Champions Tour players view the chance to win the Senior Players and get back to the Stadium Course as one of the better benefits.

“It’s huge,” he said. “It’s always a great perk to come out here and hang out with the kids and play with them, compete again.”

A different
stadium for Jaguars

Members of the Jaguars will be at The Players Championship beginning on Wednesday through the end of the week to sign autographs for fans at the designated autograph zones near player scoring or the practice range, or in fan venues such as the Patriots Outpost or the Michelob Ultra Blue Room.

Fans should monitor the Players Championship social media sites at Twitter and Facebook to get advance notice of when and where the players will appear.

The schedule: Wednesday, Sen’Derrick Marks and Josh Scobee; Thursday, Toby Gerhart and Marks; Friday, Cecil Shorts; Saturday, Paul Posluszny; Sunday, Luke Joeckel, Zane Beadles and Sam Young.


Back to school

Bubba Watson spent some of his down time since winning his second Masters by visiting the public schools he attended in Bagdad, Fla., to donate money for computers, and also visited the University of Georgia, his college alma mater.

Watson was invited to address an awards banquet for scholar-athletes at Georgia.

“I wasn’t ever invited to that banquet,” he said. “It took me two green jackets before I finally got invited to this event. It wasn’t because of my grades.”

Watson also said that the students at the banquet “inspire me.”

“Kids are playing a sport, making the A and B honor roll and doing work in the community,” he said. “They were excited about the green jacket. They didn’t know me, but they knew what the green jacket was.”


Long ball rewarded

When J.B. Holmes won the Wells Fargo Championship on Sunday, he was the fourth PGA Tour winner through 17 events in the 2013-2014 season to lead the field in driving distance. In three other tournaments, the driving distance leader has finished second. That’s been quite the contrast from the 2013 season. No player who led the field in driving distance won a tournament.

During a news conference, PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem said adding length to the 7,215-yard Stadium Course is discussed when evaluating the course after each Players. While there are no plans to make any of the holes longer, he said the real estate is there.

“We have room out there on a number of holes,” he said. “We do look at length, but I wouldn’t assume we would add length at this point.”



Country star Jake Owen will perform in front of the TPC Sawgrass clubhouse on Wednesday as part of Players Military Appreciation Day. The ceremony starts at 5:30 p.m., with Owen taking the stage shortly after. ... The third and 17th holes at the Stadium Course are tied for fifth among par-3 holes at Tour venues for the longest streak without a hole-in-one. The Tour goes back to the birth of ShotLink in 2003 but the third hole hasn’t been aced since Chris DiMarco, in 2001, and the 17th hole has been without an ace since Miguel Angel Jimenez in 2002. ... Forty players in this year’s field who have had at least one prior start in The Players have yet to hit a ball in the water at No. 17. The player with the most rounds without a water ball at the Island Green is Stuart Appleby with 42. John Rollins is next with 32 and Greg Chalmers has 26.


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