Fantasy football: Players to start, and others to sit, in Week 16 of NFL action

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Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott breaks a tackle against Washington in Week 14's win. Prescott hasn't been lighting up fantasy scoreboards, but he should fare better against the Football Team this time around in Week 16.
Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott breaks a tackle against Washington in Week 14's win. Prescott hasn't been lighting up fantasy scoreboards, but he should fare better against the Football Team this time around in Week 16.

It's been far from a typical year in the NFL. So we'll take the league's lead and switch up our start-sit column this week and take an early look.

On the bright side, we can include Thursday's players, but on the other hand, some players might end up in COVID protocols by the time we publish these suggestions. Just make sure to check statesman.com/sports for updates.

More: Fantasy football: Players to add off the waiver wire after first week of fantasy playoffs

Week 15 finally ended with the Seahawks falling to the Rams and the Washington Football Team making a decent effort despite long odds and eventually losing to the Eagles.

Cooper Kupp continues to put up huge numbers, catching nine passes for 136 yards and two scores. Sony Michel also had a strong showing, rushing for 92 yards to go with 23 receiving yards on two catches.

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Matthew Stafford's 244-yard, two-TD stat line looked amazing compared to Russell Wilson's. What more can you say about Wilson other than it'd be dangerous to have him in your lineup.

Jalen Hurts accounted for three touchdowns in another solid fantasy outing. Miles Sanders gained 131 yards while Dallas Goedert shone through the air, gaining 135 yards.

Finally able to look toward Week 16, here are some players to strongly consider for your starting lineups, and others you may want to leave on the bench.

Quarterbacks

Start

Dak Prescott, Cowboys: He hasn't been a QB1 since Week 12 against the Raiders, the last time Dallas lost. Prescott's subpar play hasn't cost the team and he should get back into fantasy managers' good graces against the Washington Football Team, which allows the most fantasy points to quarterbacks.

Matthew Stafford, Rams: Stafford has felt like a must-start player for most of the season, but he's had five games in which he's failed to record a QB1 score. He's riding pretty high right now, though, and gets to face a Vikings defense that is third worst in points allowed to the position.

Joe Burrow, Bengals: The Ravens have allowed at least two TD passes in four of the last five games. Burrow threw for over 400 yards the last time the teams met in Week 7. He should thrive again at home this time.

Sit

Kirk Cousins, Vikings: If you trust Cousins in a big week, then you have more guts than I do. He hasn't finished as a QB1 for two weeks in a row and the Vikings next face the Rams, who are good at limiting quarterbacks.

Derek Carr, Raiders: Though he finished with a top-12 performance the last time he faced the Broncos, Carr hasn't thrown more than one touchdown pass in a game since Week 10.

Carson Wentz, Colts: Wentz has registered just five QB1 performances all season and the Cardinals are fourth best in points allowed to QBs.

Running backs

Start

James Robinson, Jaguars: We knew he'd be better with Urban Meyer gone and he turned in an RB1 stat line last week against Houston. Robinson has another good matchup this week as he faces the Jets.

Cordarrelle Patterson, Falcons: Of course he struggled against the 49ers, but he should bounce back against the Lions. Arguably the best waiver wire addition of the season, Patterson has been an RB2 or better in 10 of the 13 games he's played in, including four RB1 performances.

Ronald Jones, Buccaneers: With Leonard Fournette out, Jones could really end up saving some fantasy squads who tucked him away. He's best when he's the featured back, which is what he'll be against the Panthers.

Sit

Myles Gaskin, Dolphins: Despite his reliable volume of touches, he hasn't been an RB2 or better in two straight weeks. He faces a really tough Saints defense in Week 16.

Chase Edmonds, Cardinals: He returned to action last week and did OK with his touches, but he didn't have a lot of them. Sharing time with James Conner, who has taken over as the lead back, doesn't instill confidence that Edmonds can contribute well enough for the playoffs.

Darrell Henderson, Rams: With Michel thriving as the starter right now, fantasy managers would be better served looking for another player to start as a flex. Henderson had just six carries in his return to action Tuesday.

Wide receivers

Start

Ja'Marr Chase, Bengals: He had just one catch last week, but he next gets to face the team that allowed him to hit a career high. Chase had 201 yards and a TD in Week 7 against the Ravens.

Antonio Brown, Buccaneers: Bruce Arians is welcoming the troubled wideout back and it looks as though he could be an important part of the offense. The injuries to Chris Godwin (out for the season with a torn ACL) and Mike Evans (hamstring) put the Bucs in position to rely on Brown, who faces the Panthers next.

Jaylen Waddle, Dolphins: Waddle returns to the field after going through COVID protocols. The productive rookie faces the Saints who are in the bottom 10 in points allowed to the position.

Sit

Patriots receivers: The Bills are the best at limiting the position. Though Mac Jones seems to be the real deal, he's not yet throwing receivers into top-24 performances consistently.

Kadarius Toney, Giants: A part of me wouldn't mind if fantasy managers went ahead and started the rookie coming off the COVID list anyway, just because he can be so electrifying. But you really don't want to start a player who has to rely on Mike Glennon.

A.J. Green, Cardinals: The Colts are in a groove and have been really tough against wideouts over the last four weeks. They've been the best in that stretch against the position. Christian Kirk looks like he'll have the most upside in Week 16.

This article originally appeared on Austin American-Statesman: Fantasy football: Players to start, and others to sit, in Week 16

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