Rory McIlroy has admitted he is at odds with his game after a disappointing Sunday at the Arnold Palmer Invitational saw him tumble outside the world's top-10.
The Northern Irishman carded a four-over 76 to finish in a tie for tenth at Bay Hill, eight shots behind winner Bryson DeChambeau.
As a consequence, he has slipped to 11th on the OWGR - his worst ranking since in three years.
McIlroy's current predicament is in stark contrast to the position he enjoyed exactly a year ago as the tour went into its three-month COVID-19 hiatus. At that time, the four-time major champion was the world No.1.
However, winless on the PGA Tour since November 2019, he admits that he is in desperate need of a "spark" to reignite his career.
"There were some good parts this week again," said McIlroy. "Some stuff that I'm sort of, I don't know what the word is or how to describe it, but just a little dejected. I'm maybe looking to go in a different direction.
"I don't know. I need something, I need a spark, I need something and I just don't seem to have it. Some days it's good, some days it's not.
McIlroy is the defending champion at TPC Sawgrass this week by virtue of his 2019 win in the tour's flagship event and says that he is glad to see spectators returning to the fairways.
"I've missed it a lot," he said. "Even though it's only, whatever, 25% capacity this week, it feels so much more than that and it's great to play in front of that.
"I think we're all sort of now seeing a light at the end of the tunnel where things can at least get back to some sort of normality pretty soon."