5 Colts players the Vikings should worry about in Week 2

(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) T.Y. Hilton
(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) T.Y. Hilton /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images) Justin Houston /

Justin Houston – DE

The Vikings offensive line did play better than expected against the Packers last week, but they have a stiff test again on Sunday against the Colts. Not only do they have to deal with DeForest Buckner in the middle, but they also have to worry about the speed of Justin Houston off the edge.

Houston has been in the league since 2011 and he has been a consistent pass-rushing threat since he stepped onto an NFL field. Houston has 90.5 career sacks and he still gets off the ball extremely quick. He registered a sack in the game against the Jaguars last week, showing that he still has plenty of zip in the tank even at the age of 31.

Houston will line up at left defensive end for Indianapolis on Sunday, which will put him directly over Brian O’Neill at right tackle. The good news for the Vikings is that their best offensive lineman gets to handle the Colts best pass rusher. But Indianpolis could get creative.

If they have Houston crash down over the guard that would put him against Pat Elflein’s replacement at right guard and that should be a battle that the wily veteran wins every time.

There’s also the fear that O’Neill will be aware of this or believe he has to help Minnesota’s right guard out with Buckner, forcing him to do too much. Houston could take advantage of this in a similar way that Green Bay pass rusher Za’Darius Smith did last week, and blow by a distracted O’Neill on his way to destroying Kirk Cousins.

If the Vikings want to move the ball through the air this weekend against the Colts, they’ll need to neutralize Houston and give Cousins time to hit the open receiver.