The former Open champion is ranked 76th in the standings and needs to climb inside the top 70 at the Wyndham Championship after the field for next week’s first play-off event was reduced from 125.
The top 50 after the FedEx St Jude Championship in Memphis will then advance to the BMW Championship, with only the top 30 making it to the season-ending Tour Championship in Atlanta.
“It’s funny, I feel like I’ve been in situations like this quite a bit over the last number of years,” Lowry said in a pre-tournament press conference at Sedgefield Country Club.
“I missed out on the Tour Championship by one spot last year, by two shots in 2019. I remember playing here one year, I’d been told I needed a top 10 to get to the play-offs, I finished seventh and I missed out by one point.
“So I feel like the play-offs nearly owes me one at this stage, so that’s what I’m trying to tell myself this year.
“I feel like I’ve been playing some pretty good golf most of the year. I’m coming off the back of a pretty bad week at The Open, which I was very disappointed with, but I had a nice holiday with my family last week to kind of regroup and hopefully get going again this week.”
Lowry has recorded just one top 10 on the PGA Tour this season and, although three of his eight top 20s came in the majors, the top-heavy points structure has not done him any favours.
“I think there’s been a lot of good, not much great (golf), which on the PGA Tour doesn’t cut it,” the world number 30 said.
“I think I’ve had a lot of top-20 finishes, but you need those great weeks, you need those top fives to move up the FedEx Cup points list.
“It’s been an interesting year for me. The way the schedule is with the designated events I feel like I’ve played some places that I wouldn’t normally play and I’ve had to miss tournaments that I normally like to play.
“But I’m here now and I want to play well and I want to get into next week and I want to make a run in the play-offs.
“Memphis is a course that I like playing and I’ve played all right in the past, so if I can get there, I know I can make a run there. I certainly don’t want to be sitting at home on my couch watching the play-offs.
“It’s a lot of motivation for me this week to play good golf and hopefully get my rewards at the end of it. I still feel like I can make the Tour Championship.”