Tiger Woods has put his fans and doubters alike on a critical rollercoaster over the past couple of years that is unlike any other in professional sports. Will he ever be 'back'? Can he break Jack Nicklaus' major record? And even if he's started winning regular season events again, will those victories be enough to silence even his most aggressive doubters?
After winning his third tournament of the season on Sunday afternoon at his self-hosted AT&T National, I don't think there is any question that Tiger is, in fact, back.
Make no mistake, golf fans: Tiger Woods will win another major, and it will be much sooner than you may have been thinking just a few months ago. While the field at Congressional Country Club this week wasn't exactly the most impressive of the season, Woods still managed to finish at an 8-under 276 on a course that many believed to be more difficult than it did as last year's site of the U.S. Open.
His two previous victories at the Bay Hill Invitational and Memorial Tournaments this season did feature rather stacked tournament fields, however, so it isn't like Tiger is mopping up on weaker tournaments. He has been tested during each of his three victories and passed each with flying colors.
So why hasn't he been able to do the same in the majors?
Critics (including myself) can't really blame his swing coach Sean Foley any longer. They also can't blame much on the status of his game, especially since he now has the most wins on Tour out of any player. Even those who doubted his mental state as a competitor no longer have much to stand on now that Tiger is winning again.
The only remaining questionable attribute about Tiger's game in major tournaments is something we may have never questioned before in the past: confidence.
Newsflash, folks; there's a reason why we've never been able to question Tiger's confidence.
He's always proven to us that he's the most confident golfer on the planet. Now that he's winning again, any doubt he may have had in the back of his mind has transformed to realization that he can compete and succeed in each year's major tournaments.
Now all he has to do is do it.