Each of the 30 players in the field at East Lake has a chance to win the bonus by claiming the FedEx Cup title, but only the top five in the current standings know that would be guaranteed with a win on Sunday.
The remaining 25 will need victory and help from the top five of Tiger Woods, Henrik Stenson, Adam Scott, Zach Johnson and Matt Kuchar, with leader Woods able to finish as low as 29th and still have a mathematical chance of winning.
Open champion Phil Mickelson needs to win the Tour Championship - which itself has a first prize of 1.4million US dollars - and for Woods to finish third or worse, while US Open champion Justin Rose needs a similar scenario.
Former world number one Luke Donald, who scraped into the event in 28th by finishing fourth in the BMW Championship on Sunday, needs a win and for Woods to finish 25th or worse.
"I'm excited to be back here at East Lake," Woods told his pre-tournament press conference. "The play-offs has been pretty successful, I've got to the number one spot coming into the Tour Championships which is where I wanted to be, especially having the year that I have had.
"Winning five times this year has been pretty good and to have the number one spot, like the other four guys in the top five we control our destiny. I am looking forward to the week.
"I think I've had a good run here. I've won twice and finished second four times. That's not too bad over the course of my career here."
Woods has won five times on the PGA Tour this season, although the world number one failed to add to his tally of major titles, which has been stuck on 14 since the 2008 US Open.
Asked if he thought 2013 had been one of his most consistent seasons, the 37-year-old added: "I think so. I won some big events this year, two World Golf Championships, a Players (Championship) and Arnold's (Palmer) tournament. I think that's been a pretty good year.
"I think that I'm excited the way I've put together my last couple of years and coming off the injuries, a lot of people thought I would never win again, and here we are with some more wins.
"I think that the way I've come back from my injuries and have demonstrated that I can play at a very high level and attain a world ranking that not too many people have ever gotten to, and I've gotten to it again....it's something that I'm very proud of."
Despite his five wins which also includes the Farmers Insurance Open title in January, Woods is not certain to win the PGA Tour's player of the year award, which is decided by votes from the players themselves.
Adam Scott has made a strong case with his Masters triumph, third place in the Open, fifth in the US PGA and victory in The Barclays, while Phil Mickelson won the Open at the age of 42, was runner-up in the US Open for a record sixth time and won the Phoenix Open after a first round of 60.
"I think that this week has a lot to do with it," Woods added. "It's up for grabs for the player of the year (which) is something we hold dearly because it's the respect of our peers. Having a year where they think that you were deserving of the player of the year, it's pretty special. I've had my years over the course of my career, and hopefully this will be another one."
Scott himself believes he will have to win on Sunday simply to be part of the debate.
"It's been a great year but this week counts so much for me in how the year will be remembered, by myself and others for that matter," the Australian said. "There is so much to play for, two trophies this week, and also potentially throwing my name in a player of the year debate which I think is quite a prestigious honour.
"I think I really need to win to even throw my name in the hat. It's probably the same for a couple of other guys as well. It's really fun to be in this position where I could potentially come out as player of the year but it's a tough one, I don't know how the rest of the guys see it. It's something I haven't spoken to anyone about."