Many of those in the field this week are unfamiliar with the TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm layout, with the tour returning there for the first time since 2006.
The unknown venue produced some interesting numbers and scorecards on Thursday, but three big names stood out.
Fowler missed the first two fairways in his round, finding the native area off the tee, which resulted in a bogey, double-bogey start. The world No. 9 would make four birdies and a bogey over his next seven holes to make the turn in 35.
Fowler produced a quieter scorecard on the final nine, making one birdie and one bogey for a first-round 70. "Definitely a nice way to fight back," Fowler told pgatour.com after the round. "It's not playing easy out there."
Kaufman opened with a bogey on the par-5 10th, but made birdies at Nos. 12 and 13 to get into red numbers. However, the 25-year-old played 3-over par over his next five holes, thanks to a birdie and two double-bogeys.
Unlike Fowler, Kaufman kept going backward on the final nine, carding a birdie and a bogey, while tossing a double and triple on the scorecard.
The LSU alum would finish the day with a 77.
Thomas's opening nine was all over the place, but his 10th hole resulted in a quadruple-bogey nine. The Kentuckian would shoot 74 on Day 1, his fourth straight round over par since the third-round 63 at the U.S. Open.
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