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Fantasy Football: Week 1 Quarterback Rankings

By Alex Butler

MIAMI, Sept. 5 (UPI) -- Week one of the 2016 NFL season is finally upon us.

With that comes the kick off of your fantasy football league. Following the camaraderie of your annual draft and the countless hours spent selecting those players and preparing to dominate your friends and foes, you are ready to make the decisions that can make or break your weekend.

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To make those choices easier, here are the fantasy quarterback rankings for Week 1.

If you haven't drafted yet, check out our top 150 fantasy football rankings for 2016 or view our Draft Kit, complete with overall and positional rankings, and cheat sheets.

RELATED Fantasy Football 2016 draft rankings: Odell Beckham Jr. leads UPI's top 150 [UPDATED]

TOP SHELF

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson looks to improve on his stellar 2015 statistics with an opening week match-up against the Miami Dolphins. Look for Wilson to fill up the stat sheet in terms of rushing and passing in the plus-home match-up against a weaker opponent. A strong ground game behind him will only aid his efforts. Thomas Rawls should find plenty of room to run against a Dolphins defenses that looked less-than-stellar against the run in its preseason finale against the Tennessee Titans. The Dolphins allowed the most fantasy points per game to the running back in 2015.

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In other obvious starts, look for Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers, Indianapolis' Andrew Luck, New Orleans' Drew Brees, Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger, New York's Eli Manning, Carolina's Cam Newton, and Arizona's Carson Palmer to finish inside the top-8 at the position for the week. Rodgers' Packers face a Jaguars defense that allowed the fifth most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks in 2015.

RELATED Fantasy Football: Draft these 18 value picks to start 2016 on fire

SNEAKY PLAYS

Oakland Raiders gunslinger Derek Carr kicks off his 2016 slate against the first of several subpar opponents, facing off against the Saints. The Saints allowed the most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks last season, nearly allowing three passing touchdowns per game. Detroit's Matthew Stafford could sneak into the top-10 in the opening week with a match-up against the Indianapolis Colts.

LONGSHOTS

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles could border a top-10 play this week with a home match-up against the Packers. Tampa Bay's Jameis Winston travels to battle a beatable Atlanta squad in Week 1. Cincinnati's Andy Dalton could struggle against the New York Jets' secondary and without tight end target Tyler Eifert. Washington's Kirk Cousins also faces several subpar fantasy defenses against the quarterback to begin the 2016 campaign. His first match-up has the Redskins hosting the Steelers.

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RANK NAME TEAM OPPONENT
1 Russell Wilson Seattle Seahawks vs. Miami
2 Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers at Jacksonville
3 Andrew Luck Indianapolis Colts vs. Detriot
4 Drew Brees New Orleans Saints vs. Oakland
5 Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh Steelers at Washington
6 Eli Manning New York Giants at Dallas
7 Cam Newton Carolina Panthers at Denver
8 Carson Palmer Arizona Cardinals vs. New England
9 Derek Carr Oakland Raiders at New Orleans
10 Matthew Stafford Detroit Lions at Indianapolis
11 Blake Bortles Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Green Bay
12 Jameis Winston Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta
13 Andy Dalton Cincinnati Bengals at New York Jets
14 Kirk Cousins Washington Redskins vs. Pittsburgh
15 Tyrod Taylor Buffalo Bills at Baltimore
16 Philip Rivers San Diego Chargers at Kansas City
17 Dak Prescott Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants
18 Marcus Mariota Tennessee Titans vs. Minnesota
19 Matt Ryan Atlanta Falcons vs. Tampa Bay
20 Ryan Fitzpatrick New York Jets vs. Cincinnati
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RELATED Fantasy Football Alert: RB Spencer Ware Week 1 starter for Kansas City Chiefs

RELATED Fantasy Football Draft Kit: Overall and positional rankings, cheat sheets

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