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Vikings Snap Counts: Hinton Goes Distance; 9 Defenders Play 40-Plus

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings dropped a 17-7 decision to the 49ers Saturday in the second preseason game for both teams.

Minnesota and San Francisco each rested more than two dozen players after loading up starters' reps Wednesday and Thursday in joint practices.

"Yeah, 80-plus plays, a little over 48 hours ago for our 1s against another team's 1s. I knew long ago we would kind of handle this week like this," Head Coach Kevin O'Connell said after the game. "Our game reps took place at our facility this week. And then, that competitive environment that we were able to bring in, it was phenomenal to bring a team like the Niners in for those reps.

"I feel like our team improved. Those starters got a lot of great competitive work," O'Connell added. "I thought Kirk [Cousins] had a really good week of practice against a really good defense, a really good front that can consistently get pressure."

The game setting did provide O'Connell and his staff the opportunity to again closely split reps for backup quarterbacks Kellen Mond and Sean Mannion — and take a deeper look at young receivers — on a night when the offense struggled.

Guard Kyle Hinton, a 2020 seventh-round pick, went the distance for Minnesota's offense, playing all 52 snaps.

Rookie cornerback Akayleb Evans led Minnesota's defense by playing 75 of the Vikings 76 defensive snaps (99 percent). Evans packed a punch, and T.Y. McGill, Jr., continued a flashy preseason for the veteran journeyman. McGill recorded 1.5 sacks on 34 defensive snaps a week after posting 2.0 sacks on 12 defensive snaps at Las Vegas.

Here's a look at Minnesota's snap counts from Preseason Week 2:

— Mond started this time and played almost the entire first quarter. Mannion finished the first half. The 49ers controlled the football in the second half. Mond had a series in the third quarter when Minnesota's time of possession was a paltry 1:29. Mannion had a pair of three-and-out drives in the fourth quarter, and Mond re-entered the game with 4:09 remaining. Mond finished with 28 offensive snaps, and Mannion played 24.

— This was the second week in a row for Hinton to play the most offensive snaps (he played 43 in Las Vegas). Tackle Olisaemeka Udoh and Blake Brandel, who played tackle and guard, and center Austin Schlottmann each played 38 snaps. RG Ed Ingram started and totaled 34 offensive snaps. He helped block for Minnesota's rushing touchdown. Rookie tackle Vederian Lowe played 18 snaps. G Wyatt Davis, T Timon Parris and C Josh Sokol each played 14 snaps.

— Tight end Zach Davidson, a fifth-round pick last year, played 38 offensive snaps, the most of any skill position for a second consecutive week. Receivers Bisi Johnson and Ihmir Smith-Marsette were next at 32. WR Trishton Jackson played 24 offensive snaps and 11 on special teams. Myron Mitchell (19), Jalen Nailor (18) and Albert Wilson (16) rounded out the night for Vikings receivers. Rookie TE Nick Muse played 16 snaps, and Ben Ellefson played 13.

— Alexander Mattison started in place of Dalvin Cook but played just eight offensive snaps for the second consecutive week. Bryant Koback led Minnesota's running backs with 19 offensive snaps and tied fellow undrafted rookie Zach McCloud for the team lead with 17 special teams snaps. Kene Nwangwu (14) and Ty Chandler (11) were somewhat involved on offense.

— Defensively, the Vikings had nine players who were on the field for 40 or more snaps. After Evans, cornerback Harrison Hand was next with 58 defensive snaps. Hand replaced rookie Andrew Booth, Jr., who left the game with an ankle injury on his 19th defensive snap. OLB Janarius Robinson played 46 snaps on defense.

— Safeties Myles Dorn and Mike Brown tied cornerback Nate Hairston with 45 defensive snaps. First-round pick Lewis Cine played 31 snaps at safety, and so did Josh Metellus.

— Jaylen Twyman (41) and T.J. Smith (40) led Minnesota's interior defensive linemen, edging out former Gopher Esezi Otomewo (39). James Lynch played 16 snaps, Armon Watts played 12 and Jonathan Bullard was on the field for nine.

— Chazz Surratt led inside linebackers with 38 snaps. Troy Dye (31) and Brian Asamoah II (30) started in place of Eric Kendricks and Jordan Hicks. Blake Lynch (25) and William Kwenkeu (20) also manned the middle.

— OLB Luiji Vilain recovered a fumble on one of his 40 defensive snaps. Pat Jones II (27) and D.J. Wonnum (13) started on the edge. McCloud played 26 snaps.