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Power Rankings: 2018 Wells Fargo Championship

Rory McIlroy at the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational.
Getty Images

The PGA Tour heads to North Carolina this week for the Wells Fargo Championship. A field of 156 players will tackle a difficult test at Quail Hollow Club, which hosted the PGA Championship just nine months ago.

Be sure to join the all-new Golf Channel Fantasy Challenge - including a new One & Done game offering - to compete for prizes and form your own leagues, and log on to www.playfantasygolf.com to submit your picks for this week's event.

Brian Harman won this event last year by one shot over Dustin Johnson when it was held at Eagle Point. Here are 10 names to watch in Charlotte:

1. Rory McIlroy: When it comes to Quail Hollow, McIlroy is an undisputed No. 1. The Ulsterman earned his first Tour win here back in 2010, lost a playoff two years later and blistered the course again en route to win No. 2 in 2015. He racked up six top-10s in seven trips from 2010-16 and finished T-22 at last year's PGA.

2. Justin Thomas: The last time Thomas played the Green Mile, he left with the Wanamaker Trophy. He hasn't slowed down since his major breakthrough at Quail Hollow, and this week has a chance to reach No. 1 in the world. His T-7 finish here in 2015 shows that last year's performance was no outlier.

3. Rickie Fowler: Like Thomas, Fowler has thrived on this course both as a major test and as a regular Tour stop. This is where Fowler got his first career win, back in 2012 in a playoff over McIlroy and D.A. Points, and he finished T-5 or better both in 2016 and at last year's PGA. Making his first start since a Masters runner-up.

4. Patrick Reed: Reed makes his first stroke-play start as a major champ on the course where he cracked the top 10 at a major for the first time just nine months ago. Reed's runner-up at the PGA was a sign of things to come, and he has made the cut every time he's played this event at Quail Hollow while finishing outside the top 35 just once.

5. Jason Day: The former world No. 1 remains in the midst of a return to form, with top-25 finishes in each of four stroke-play starts this year. That includes a win at Torrey Pines and a runner-up at Pebble Beach, and now Day heads back to a course where he finished T-9 in his last Wells Fargo appearance and matched the same result at the PGA despite a disastrous quadruple bogey during the third round that ended his title chances.

6. Phil Mickelson: Mickelson makes his post-Masters return on a course where he has done everything but win, having finished fifth or better a whopping six times at Quail Hollow since 2007. While he missed the cut at the PGA and has largely struggled since his breakthrough win in Mexico, don't be surprised if his name pops up on the leaderboard come Sunday.

7. Hideki Matsuyama: Matsuyama has gotten progressively better in each appearance at Quail Hollow, starting with a T-38 finish in 2014 and peaking at last year's PGA when he tied for fifth and had a chance to win coming down the stretch. He is now three starts into his return from a wrist injury and finished T-19 at the Masters.

8. Louis Oosthuizen: Oosthuizen rounded out his career Grand Slam of major runner-ups at Quail Hollow last summer, and in recent weeks he's quietly been displaying some solid form. He teamed with fellow South African Charl Schwartzel to nearly win last week at Zurich, and his last four stroke-play starts have produced three top-20s.

9. Tiger Woods: Woods is a bit of an unknown this week, but his past success is enough to earn a spot on this list. He returns to Quail Hollow for the first time since 2012 and hasn't played the weekend since 2009, but that year he tied for fourth and Woods won this event back in 2007. Making his first start since the Masters, there's reason to suspect he may contend as he did multiple times in Florida.

10. Webb Simpson: Simpson will enjoy the trappings of a home game this week, as he returns to a course where he is a member and was a runner-up to McIlroy back in 2015. Simpson also finished T-4 back in 2012 and has three top-10s in his last six stroke-play starts, including a T-5 finish at the RBC Heritage three weeks ago.