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Studs and duds from Colts’ preseason win over Vikings


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The Indianapolis Colts came away with a 12-10 win over the Minnesota Vikings but given that this is the preseason, the focus is more on individual performances rather than the outcome of the game.

Despite the offense struggling to find the end zone, there were still a few encouraging players from Saturday night’s win. On the flip side, there were also some players who didn’t quite live up to expectations.

Here are the studs and duds from the Colts’ preseason win over the Vikings:

STUD: DE Ben Banogu

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AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn

It was a big night for the third-year pass rusher who finally matched all the preseason hype into a game. Banogu was all over the field Saturday night wreaking havoc as both a pass rusher and a run defender. Pro Football Focus credited Banogu with six total pressures on the night, which was a team-high. This was a very encouraging sight for Banogu, who can continue to ascend up the depth chart with another strong outing in the preseason finale next week.

DUD: QB Sam Ehlinger

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AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn

Getting the start for the Colts, the rookie in Ehlinger struggled to get the ball moving downfield during his quarter-plus of action. His stat line was uninspiring and while it wasn’t totally his fault, Ehlinger didn’t do much to help his case in the quarterback competition. The sixth-round pick was 8/13 for 70 yards, two interceptions and a 36.2 passer rating. The first interception came off a batted ball at the line of scrimmage and was taken back for six. The second came on a weird play where Ehlinger tried to fit a ball into a tight window to Ashton Dulin, who may have had some miscommunication with his quarterback as his head wasn’t turned toward the throw.

STUD: OT Julién Davenport

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AP Photo/Michael Conroy

The Colts haven’t had a ton of exciting moments in the competition for left tackle, but Davenport at least showed some improvement during Saturday’s preseason game. He was easily the best left tackle on the roster during the game and could be in the lead now with Eric Fisher still working his way back from offseason Achilles surgery.

DUD: QB Jacob Eason

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AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn

It wasn’t a great day for Eason either. The second-year quarterback came into the game with roughly four minutes left until the first half ended. After showing some poise in the pocket during the opener, Eason seemed a bit more skiddish on Saturday. He was rushing throws and struggled with varying his velocity regardless of depth of target. Eason finished the game 16/27 for 132 yards and a 71.8 passer rating. He’s still likely in the lead for the backup role behind Carson Wentz, but there was hope that he would build on his impressive debut.

STUD: CB Rock Ya-Sin

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AP Photo/Stacy Bengs

Ya-Sin didn’t play a whole lot, but he proved he’s likely in line for a starting role opposite Xavier Rhodes to begin the season. The third-year cornerback was targeted twice during his limited work and came away with impactful plays both times. The first came on a third-down target while covering Adam Thielen in the slot. Ya-Sin was with him the whole way and came away with a pass break-up. The other came on a roll out in which Ya-Sin was on the hip of tight end Irv Smith Jr. His tight coverage forced another incompletion and a punt.

DUD: OT Sam Tevi

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AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

Woof. It was another rough outing for Tevi, who seems to be taking massive steps back in the competition for depth at offensive tackle. Tevi has been working mostly at right tackle since getting the first crack at the left tackle spot. It hasn’t really helped. According to Pro Football Focus, Tevi allowed four pressures on 20 pass-blocking snaps. He’ll have one more game to make his case for a roster spot.

STUD: WR Dezmon Patmon

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AP Photo/Jim Mone

There is a strong battle brewing at the bottom of the wide receiver depth chart. At this point, the final two spots seem to be up for grabs but it really may just be one final spot as it will be difficult for the Colts to cut Mike Strachan in hopes of clearing waivers for the practice squad. So with really just one spot being available, Patmon may be leading the charge over his biggest competition in Ashton Dulin. We mentioned Dulin earlier for his part in the interception. Not a great look. But Patmon also led the way with four receptions for 60 yards, which is another big game for the second-year wideout. The biggest tell, however, may be that Patmon got some reps at gunner, which is Dulin’s specialty. Patmon made good on that rep by downing a punt inside the 10-yard line. If Patmon proves he can make an impact on special teams, the final spot in the wide receiver room is his.

DUD: WR Ashton Dulin

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AP Photo/Michael Conroy

Dulin’s game was rough on Saturday. Granted, the wide receiver is still getting back into playing shape after missing most of training camp with a hamstring injury. Even so, he didn’t help his case for a roster spot in the second preseason game. He seemed to have some miscommunication with Sam Ehlinger on a slant route that led to an interception. He failed to catch either of his two targets on the day and as we mentioned above, Dezmon Patmon is seeing gunner reps now. Dulin will need a big game in the finale to secure his roster spot.

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