Eason, Colts eke past Vikings 12-10; offenses need more work

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jacob Eason passed for 132 yards and directed two field goal drives, and the Indianapolis Colts beat the Minnesota Vikings 12-10 on Saturday night.

Troy Dye returned an interception 33 yards for a touchdown to highlight a sharper showing by Minnesota's backups, one of two deflected-then-picked-off passes thrown by Indianapolis rookie Sam Ehlinger. Ehlinger got the start and led two field goal drives in the first half.

Dye snagged the ball that was tipped at the line by Armon Watts and glanced off Parris Campbell's hands in the first quarter, running it in for the only touchdown the Vikings have in their two exhibition games.

Eason went 16 for 27 without a turnover for the Colts, strengthening his hold on the No. 2 spot ahead of Ehlinger as the potential fill-in starter if Carson Wentz isn't ready for the regular season. Ehlinger was 8 for 13 for 70 yards, playing with about half starters and half backups. He was also intercepted by undrafted rookie defensive tackle Jordon Scott, who grabbed the ball after it glanced off wide receiver Ashton Dulin.

Playing three safe series behind the starting offensive line, Kirk Cousins had his first and likely only action of this preseason for the Vikings and finished 5 for 7 for 23 yards. He was sacked once by first-round draft pick Kwity Paye, who beat left tackle Rashod Hill off the edge.

The Vikings failed to convert 11 of their 12 third downs. Greg Joseph missed a 51-yard field goal wide right, the only time Cousins and company were in scoring range. Joseph later made a 49-yard try, after a possession with backup Jake Browning behind center.

Browning went 6 for 15 for 82 yards, and rookie Kellen Mond was 6 for 12 for 61 yards.

BEHAVE, PLEASE

The game was enough of a yawner even by preseason standards that the fans spiced up the wave late in the third quarter by tossing their souvenir programs in the air during their turn to stand, prompting two warnings from the public address announcer.

RESTING UP

Colts: WR T.Y. Hilton, RB Jonathan Taylor, LB Darius Leonard and TE Jack Doyle were the most prominent players held out for precaution.

Vikings: Defensive starters Danielle Hunter, Harrison Smith, Patrick Peterson and Xavier Woods were on the sideline again, as was RB Dalvin Cook.

INJURY REPORT

Colts: LG Quenton Nelson, who has the same type of foot injury as Wentz, remained out along with fellow OL starters Ryan Kelly (elbow) and Eric Fisher (Achilles). ... Backup DT Antwaun Woods hurt his hamstring in the first quarter and was ruled out for the rest of the game.

Vikings: WR Justin Jefferson was held out again, coming off a minor shoulder injury that occurred two weeks ago in practice. LB Anthony Barr (undisclosed) was also a spectator, as was rookie LT Christian Darrisaw (groin), who has fallen behind Hill on the depth chart. ... WR Adam Thielen played the first series but was banged up after an incompletion and received brief attention to his leg from the athletic training staff.

UP NEXT

Colts: at Detroit on Friday night.

Vikings: at Kansas City on Friday night.

___

More AP NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Dave Campbell, The Associated Press

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