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Underdog Vikings Eyeing a Rebound Against Banged-Up Colts

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen catches a touchdown pass ahead of Green Bay Packers safety Darnell Savage, right, during an NFL football game Sept. 13, 2020, in Minneapolis.

Both Minnesota (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS) and Indianapolis (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS) came out of Week 1 on the losing end – but the Colts’ defeat was a lot more damaging as the teams look to enter the win column Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium. Not only was Indy stunned 27-20 by Jacksonville as a 7-point favorite, it also lost starting running back Marlon Mack to a season-ending injury.

Minnesota Vikings vs Indianapolis Colts
  • Date/Time: September 20, 1 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: Lucas Oil Stadium
  • TV Coverage: Fox
  • Opening Odds: Colts -3 | O/U 47 (Line History)
  • Vikings vs Colts Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

Indy came into Week 2 as a 3-point favorite; the line hasn’t moved yet, but Minnesota +3 has risen from -110 to -115. The total of 47 now sits between 47.5 and 48.5 depending on the sportsbook.

Minnesota News & Notes

While the departure of No. 2 receiver Stefon Diggs to Buffalo created a void in the Vikings’ passing game, Adam Thielen is here to remind everyone that Minnesota still has a pretty good No. 1 guy. Thielen was outstanding in the Vikings’ 43-34 slugfest loss to rival Green Bay, hauling in six passes for a team-high 110 yards and a pair of TDs; he had just two 100-yard games in 2019.

The Vikings also got an impressive showing from the rush attack – though you have to wonder how the carries will be distributed moving forward, especially if you’re looking at Dalvin Cook as a player prop or DFS play. Cook finished with 12 carries for 50 yards, while backup Alexander Mattison had six rushes for 50 yards and QB Kirk Cousins added four rushes for 34 yards.

Indianapolis News & Notes

Philip Rivers’ first game as an Indianapolis Colt looked an awful lot like many of his recent games with the Los Angeles Chargers: he piled up the passing yards (363) but had just one TD throw against two interceptions. But he went well over his yardage prop and is in prime position to do it again as he faces a Vikings team that allowed Aaron Rodgers to throw for 364 yards in Week 1.

The loss of Mack is a significant one for a Colts team that will be relying heavily on its rushers in both the run and pass game. Barring another signing, it leaves Wisconsin rookie Jonathan Taylor as the workhorse on early downs; Taylor had nine carries for a meager 22 yards last week but he added six receptions – fourth-most by any running back in his first career game.

Betting Pick: Vikings +3 (-110)

Both teams have sharp passing offenses, while the Vikings get a slight edge in the run game. And with defenses so difficult to handicap this early in the season, that edge is good enough for us to take Minnesota and the points.

Shark Bites
  • Minnesota is 3-8 ATS in its last 11 games as an underdog.
  • Indianapolis is 1-3 ATS in its last 4 games.
  • The OVER is 5-0 in the Colts’ last 5 September home games.