EAGAN, Minn. – Sean Mannion and Kellen Mond will likely get plenty of reps in the Vikings first preseason game.
Minnesota is set to face Las Vegas at 3:25 p.m. (CT) Sunday, as the battle for backup quarterback continues.
The Vikings unofficial depth chart, which the team released Wednesday, listed Mannion "OR" Mond as the backup quarterback behind Kirk Cousins. And with Cousins absent from Thursday's walk-through session and practice due to illness, that left ample opportunity for the two QBs.
Mannion and Mond spoke with Twin Cities media members Thursday afternoon, and both expressed confidence in the offense under new Head Coach Kevin O'Connell.
"I feel super comfortable with the playbook and the scheme," Mannion said. "I think, really our whole team, everyone's put a lot of work in from Phase 1, to Phase 2, to OTAs, all the way through to, what is this, our third week of camp or so.
"The first preseason game, you just want to go out there and execute well and own our stuff," he added. "Just go out there and take it play by play."
Mond, a third-round draft pick in 2021, also said he's "really comfortable."
"I think there's always certain nuances that you can go in and add into certain games," Mond said. "Certain game plans will be more extensive as we get going into the season, but I think just go out … execute and just trust my eyes and play fast."
Cousins' status, as well as Head Coach Kevin O'Connell's interest in playing him (if healthy) at Las Vegas, remain unknown. But regardless, it's safe to assume that the game will provide both Mannion and Mond the chance to make their case for QB2.
"I'm really excited just to be able to go out … quarterbacks are finally able to get hit, be able to make plays, trust my reads and just go out and play football," Mond said. "That's what we're here for, and now that we're able to go and do it on a live stage against a different team and just go and be able to execute, I'm very excited."
Mannion emphasized that every rep matters.
"Whether it's being out here at practice, being at a preseason game, at a walk-through – just showing that you own the system. I think you just really want to put your best foot forward all the time," he said. "Obviously the preseason game, we only get three opportunities like this, and you want to go out there and put your best foot forward one play after the next.
"But I think the mindset has been constant, really all the way through [from] OTAs. You try not to make it really any different for the preseason game," Mannion continued. "You want to kind of just, again, focus on your game, focus on the play, focus on just executing well."
While both quarterbacks hope Cousins is healthy and able to be part of Sunday's exhibition contest, they're preparing to capitalize on whatever chance they're given.
"Obviously you want to have Kirk with us," Mond said. "I'm not sure how much he was going to play, but just for my focus and my ability to go out there and execute on each play that I'm in and make the most out of my opportunities – that's what I'm most excited for."