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3 Observations: Brian O'Neill Reps vs. Danielle Hunter, Defensive Stands & Red Zone

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings moved up Sunday's practice a couple of hours because of a weather forecast that prompted the closure of training camp to fans.

Minnesota was able to fit in its full, padded practice outdoors and stay dry.

Monday's session is scheduled to be a walk-through/practice that is also closed to the public before Tuesday's off day for players.

Action resumes and ramps up Wednesday and Thursday when the Vikings are scheduled to host the Titans in joint practices ahead of Saturday's preseason game between the squads. Click here for tickets for the joint practices.

Not participating: Lucky Jackson, Kene Nwangwu, Brian Asamoah II, William Kwenkeu, Jaquelin Roy, Garett Maag, Jalen Nailor and Jonathan Bullard did not participate. T.J. Hockenson participated in position drills but not team drills.

Status upgrade: Brian O'Neill had some good battles with Danielle Hunter (more on this below) and took a few snaps with the first team during an 11-on-11 period. Trishton Jackson participated in team drills.

Here are three observations from Sunday's session presented by Minnesota Eye Consultants, the Proud LASIK Partner of the Minnesota Vikings:

1. O'Neill and Hunter reconnect

The trenches featured competitive sessions of 9-on-7 and 1-on-1 drills.

O'Neill dueled against Hunter to start the contest, and Hunter won with an outside spin move.

O'Neill has been recovering from an Achilles injury suffered on Jan. 1 and ramping up his participation. He's been participating in some induvial drills, and on Sunday he participated in team drills for the first time this camp.

"I'm really excited. I'm just trying to follow the plan that they've got for me and starting to shake some rust off," O'Neill said after practice. "We're right on schedule, right where we want to be. They've done a great job. We're not there yet but will be."

On the interior, defensive tackle Harrison Phillips split consecutive matchups against center Garrett Bradbury. Phillips quickly displaced Bradbury on their first rep with a powerful throwaway technique. Bradbury countered that by locking his hands onto Phillips on the next play. Thanks to Bradbury's early hands, Phillips was locked into position, unable to detach.

Abraham Beauplan turned heads by recording two tackles for losses on back-to-back runs. His first tackle came via a B-gap blitz. In the next play, he identified an outside run and won a race to the running back.

2. Defense posts 2 stops

The Vikings ended their practice with a 2-minute drill that gave the first-team offense and the second-team offense the ball at its 30-yard line.

The first-team defense, featuring a rush unit of Hunter and D.J. Wonnum on the outside with fellow edge rushers Pat Jones II and Marcus Davenport at the tackle spots was able to create good pressures against Kirk Cousins throughout the drill.

Cousins converted a third-and-12 from the offense's 28-yard line with a pass to Jordan Addison for a gain of 12, but the offense was unable to move the ball past midfield.

Nick Mullens led the second-team offense down the field with a deep pass to Josh Oliver, and a short throw to the tight end before connecting with Brandon Powell for a gain of 9 to the 15-yard line. Mullens, however, was intercepted when targeting Jalen Reagor along the sideline. Andrew Booth, Jr., picked off the pass to end the drill.

3. 7-on-7 splits

The day also included a good bit of work in the red zone for 7-on-7 passing drills.

Cousins completed two touchdowns to Justin Jefferson and one each to K.J. Osborn and Johnny Mundt.

Mullens worked the ball to Ty Chandler, who shook free from Troy Dye with a great route, for a touchdown and also completed a scoring pass to N'Keal Harry.

Dye bounced back with a nice pass breakup on a ball intended for Osborn, and Joejuan Williams added a pass breakup on a pass thrown to Powell.