Tiger Woods withdraws from Arnold Palmer Invitational

Tiger Woods withdraws from Arnold Palmer Invitational

Tiger Woods announced he will not participate in the Arnold Palmer Invitational this week, and the announcement has left betting companies wondering how serious the injury is. He says his lower back is fine and he has no concerns over the long run.

He continued in a follow-up tweet: "I'd like to send my regrets to the Palmer family and the Orlando fans".

The eight-time Bay Hill champion, and now ranked 12th in the world, said he's been battling with the injury for some weeks.

Woods didn't specify what caused his neck pain, but he skipped the Honda Classic last week and during the British Open a year ago, he wore KT Tape on his neck after he woke up with stiffness.

More news: Venezuela expels German ambassador as crisis continues

He hopes to return to action at the Players Championship at Sawgrass, Florida, on March 14-17. He took last week off after playing in the WGC tournament in Mexico. That year's WD was his second in as many tournaments as he also WD from the BMW Championship two weeks before East Lake. Instead of rest, and in a somewhat surprising decision, Woods travelled directly to Mexico to play in the WGC Mexico Championship.

"I (aggravated) it last Sunday", he said, "and then got an MRI Monday, which came back that I had an annular tear in my disc, and then I've got set problems as well".

McIlroy is the defending champion - although he's not my pick this week - and he's coming in off of four straight top-five finishes to start his PGA Tour year.

And think about this: If the PGA Tour schedule stayed the same as it was last season, when the Valspar Championship was in early March, Woods would be withdrawing from our tournament.