Woods, who said Wednesday he will miss the rest of the year because of surgery to repair a torn knee ligament, is atop the FedExCup standings with a 6,755-point lead over Phil Mickelson.
He likely would remain as the No. 1 seed when the four-tournament playoffs begin Aug. 21 at The Barclays unless Mickelson were to win at least once and have another top finish before then.
The top 144 players qualify for The Barclays, but only 143 would play.
Woods also is a lock to remain in the top 120 for the Deutsche Bank Championship and the top 70 for the BMW Championship, but tour spokesman Steve Dennis said it is virtually impossible for Woods to remain in the top 30 for the TOUR Championship.
Other ramifications of Woods not playing the rest of the season:
' Woods mathematically clinched a spot among the top eight automatic qualifiers for the U.S. Ryder Cup team. Now, the ninth player in the standings after the PGA Championship earns a place on the team.
' His absence from the British Open allows one more spot among qualifiers.
' He will be the first PGA champion not to defend his title since 1994, when Paul Azinger was recovering from cancer. The defending champion hosts a dinner for past champions.
The PGA Championship puts the three major champions of the year in the same group for the first two rounds. It will have to find an alternate to go with Masters champion Trevor Immelman and the British Open champion.
The last time this happened was in 2005, when Woods won the Masters and British Open. He was to play with U.S. Open champion Michael Campbell and Greg Norman, but Norman withdrew and was replaced by Kevin Sutherland.
' The Grand Slam of Golf, a two-day exhibition in Bermuda for the major champions, will have an alternate for the second straight year. Alternates are taken from a list of former major champions based on how they fare in the majors this year. Phil Mickelson was the atop the list after the U.S. Open, followed by Mike Weir.