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September 6, 2018

Rickie Fowler

Carmel, Indiana

Q. Rickie, did you have any idea what you might expect today when you came out?
RICKIE FOWLER: Well, I've been playing well at home, not a whole lot to look at. I didn't get a bunch of rounds in. I was able to play 72 holes last week and at least try and simulate playing in a tournament four days in a row and was playing nice at home so I was hoping that would definitely carryover and I think we've been swinging well going into the little break that I needed to take and everything came out well and definitely nice to get off to a good start today.

I mean it is tough coming back to competitive golf. Like you said, you kind of don't always know exactly what's going to happen out there but I feel like we did a good job of swinging within ourselves, playing our game and hit a lot of good shots.

Q. Did you feed off Tiger? Obviously he got off to a good start, you got off to a good start. Had to be pretty fun out there playing with him.
RICKIE FOWLER: We both birdied the first hole and kind of got things going. Yeah, obviously he had it -- I think he turned at 6, I was able to turn at 4 and no, it's always fun when you kind of feed off the guys in your group and it was nice Jordan finally hopped on the back-9 and was able to turn his round around.

So, two guys that I'm close with, good friends with and two teammates that will be together in Paris in a couple weeks.

Nice that all of us -- like I said, Jordan brought it back. Tiger and I were off to a nice start. I'm happy where we're at.

Q. Obviously missing the first two Playoff events, do you feel anymore pressure trying to make sure you get to the Tour Championship at East Lake or how are you approaching this week?
RICKIE FOWLER: If I play how I have been and kind of piece things together and do what we do, we'll be fine, but all we can take care of was today, Thursday, get off the a solid start.

Obviously don't want to get stuck behind the 8 Ball and did a good job of that, but I'm happy we're back this early as far as coming back from the injury. You never know exactly how long those things are going to last and especially with our sport being very rotational-related, having the oblique was a little scary but happy that we're in a good spot now and able to kind of work through it.

Like I said, the big thing is listening to the body and make sure we're not over-stressing the area. Definitely happy where we're at.

Q. How was your first day back?
RICKIE FOWLER: Good. It was nice. Nice to continue to way I've been playing at home. Not a whole lot of playing, played last week, I was able to play Wednesday through the weekend so been swinging well but it's always -- you know, that question, coming back out after three weeks off and after not playing a whole lot. Definitely happy with the start.

Q. Did it help you to see somebody playing so well along side you?
RICKIE FOWLER: It never hurts. I always enjoy playing with Tiger and obviously been nice to see him back playing well these -- especially last few months.

Jordan finally hopped on the train on the back-9, turned his round around. Playing with Tiger good friends and two teammates of mine be in Paris together. We had a good time out there, good chats going up the fairway and it is fun playing with guys when you kind of feed off each other a little bit. Took a little while for Jordan to catch on.

Q. Any discomfort at all?
RICKIE FOWLER: Today was good. Felt good. I think the biggest thing is making sure I stay in good positions, especially with driver, and did a good job of that today, never got into -- the swing never got too long or extension where I stretched the side, the obliques.

I think that's kind of the main focus is if I swing properly and take care of that, shouldn't be any issues.

Q. (Inaudible)?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, I mean it wasn't anything special as far as he left a few out there, Tiger did. Same with myself. I think it was just a good, solid round of golf. He hit some close, made a couple nice putts. It was fun to watch.

It is like I said, I enjoy playing with Tiger. I know it can get a little hectic. You definitely don't want to be playing in front of him. We had a good time.

Q. Rickie, talk about your relationship with Jarrod?
RICKIE FOWLER: Jarrod and I were real close. We didn't get to spend a whole lot time together in the past few years. But sent these down to a guy in Miami, Nomad Customs, he did them. Actually had them at the PGA on the weekend but I didn't have anything to wear with them so I couldn't really make it work and I thought it would be a fun time to bring them out and obviously we don't want to ever forget Jarrod.

I think as long as we can have people remember his name, who he was and kind of continue on the legacy of what he was doing, you know, fight he was putting up but also remind people that people die from cancer everyday, especially leukemia as well, and there's plenty of families like his going through the fight now and into the future. It's not something that just goes away. Like I said, I think it will be fun to carry on his name.

Q. Ryder Cup questions? You've gone through three different Ryder Cups. What's the first tee like, what's the first tee experience like?
RICKIE FOWLER: I mean especially if you're going there for the first time you're never going to feel the nerves -- it's a different situation. It's a lot of fun.

I prefer if you can hit driver off the first tee because it's got the biggest face. It's a blast, especially I think Overseas is pretty cool just because I think there's a little bit more of -- there's some songs and chants and the fans are there super early, a lot of times more like under a horseshoe. Hazeltine was pretty cool but wasn't fully enclosed. Glen Eagles felt like we were there in on top of us and the tee kind of sat back in it. First tee of the Ryder Cup is crazy.

Q. How do you feel about your round here? I know you went low. What do you think of the course?
RICKIE FOWLER: I felt good. I don't remember the course a whole lot from when we played here 7, 8 years ago. I played well here and did a good job of getting the ball in the fairway today and kind of going from there.

Would have been nice to close a little bit better but 5-under, especially coming off -- just kind of managing our round and getting off to a good start.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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