Washington - Brandt Snedeker will play his first event in five months after a sternum joint injury starting on Thursday at the RSM Classic, the last PGA tournament until January.
The last 156-player event on the 2017 schedule will be played at Sea Island Golf Club in St. Simons Island, Georgia, in an area where more than two dozen tour players reside, including host Davis Love.
Snedeker, who has slid to 47th in the world rankings, pulled out of July's British Open on the eve of the event.
"We were going to play golf and went out there on the range and I couldn't hit about five balls and I couldn't breathe," Snedeker said. "It has gotten to the point where the doctors were like, 'We need to figure out if we have this licked or if we need to do something different.'"
The 36-year-old American had his ninth career top-10 major finish with a ninth-place effort at the US Open in June at Erin Hills and played the following week before the injury.
"I've been playing at home, but there's only so much I can do at home before I can see if I can handle five days in a row, uneven lies, rough, bunkers," Snedeker said. "I can do it fine at home, but out here it's always a little bit different."
A top prize of $1.1 million has attracted such players as last week's PGA winner, Patton Kizzire, and US compatriots Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Bill Haas, Ryan Armour and Charles Howell as well as South Korea's Whee Kim.
"I'm looking forward to getting back out there and making some birdies," Kizzire said. "I've hit the ball very well since the middle of the summer, but I hadn't been able to get the putter going until last week and putting is usually my strength."
Among 10 major winners in the field are South Africa's Ernie Els and Retief Goosen, Irishman Padraig Harrington and Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell.
The RSM Classic uses two courses over the first two rounds, the par-70 Seaside and par-72 Plantation layouts, before the last two rounds are played on the Seaside course.
The 2017-18 season will resume in January in Hawaii.