MINNEAPOLIS > Andrew Luck threw for 250 yards and two touchdowns and the Indianapolis Colts rolled to a 34-6 victory over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
Robert Turbin rushed for two touchdowns, Mike Adams forced a fumble and added an interception for the Colts (7-7).
Frank Gore rushed for 101 yards and Indianapolis won on the road for the fourth time this season, dominating a Vikings defense that is among the best in the league.
Adrian Peterson had just 22 yards on six carries and lost a fumble in his first game back from a knee injury for the Vikings (7-7).
The Vikings entered the game believing they needed to win the final three games of the season to make the playoffs. Sam Bradford threw for 291 yards with one interception and one lost fumble for Minnesota.
After a critical home loss to Houston last week, the Colts entered the week trailing the Texans and Titans in the AFC South and facing a daunting road matchup against coach Mike Zimmer’s defense.
The Vikings ranked second in the NFL in yards and points allowed and had made star quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers, Cam Newton, Eli Manning and Matthew Stafford look ordinary with their relentless, attacking scheme.
But Luck completed 21 of 28 passes and was barely touched all afternoon, hitting Erik Swoope for a 27-yard touchdown in the second quarter that gave the Colts a 17-0 lead.
The big play seemed to sap some of the Vikings’ spirit on defense, a rarity in Zimmer’s three seasons at the helm.
They showed little fight on Turbin’s second TD run of the game, a pin-balling 6-yard score in which he bounced off two attempted tackles by Everson Griffen and ran through half-hearted attempts from Brian Robison and Captain Munnerlyn that made it 24-0 just before halftime.
Adams intercepted Bradford on the next possession, setting up Adam Vinatieri’s second field goal and bringing boos raining down from the U.S. Bank Stadium crowd.
Luck capped the day with an easy 50-yard strike to Phillip Dorsett.
The Vikings’ star running back missed the previous 11 games while recovering from a torn meniscus in his right knee, but was able to return to the field one week sooner than he expected after a good week of practice.
The former MVP rushed for just 50 yards in the first two games of the season before getting injured and was no more effective against the Colts. His fumble in Colts territory in the second quarter came after his only decent run of the day, a 13-yard burst. He played sparingly in the second half.
Gore had 115 yards from scrimmage to give him 16,332 for his career, surpassing Tony Dorsett for 10th on the NFL’s career list. He also passed John Riggins for 12th on the league’s career carries list.
It was the 33-year-old’s second 100-yard game of the season, and just the third time a Colts running back has topped 100 yards in Luck’s 68 games. He is the first Colts running back to have multiple 100-yard games in a season since Joseph Addai in 2007.
The Colts never gave the Vikings a chance to get into this one, thoroughly dominating the first two quarters. They outgained Minnesota 281-69, had 21 first downs to the Vikings’ two and held the ball for 23 minutes and 32 seconds to take a 27-0 lead at the half.
The Vikings have had issues with their offensive line all season and have lost five players on the unit to season-ending injuries. Center Joe Berger missed the two previous games with a concussion, but returned to play on Sunday. With right guard Joe Berger out with a concussion, Berger moved over to fill his place and Nick Easton started his third straight game at center.
Colts: LB Chris Carter left the game in the first half with a shoulder injury and did not return.
Vikings: WR Adam Thielen left the game with a neck injury after a big hit from Darius Butler. … FB Zach Line suffered a concussion. … DT Tom Johnson limped off the field in the third quarter with an injured right hamstring.
Colts: It doesn’t get any easier for Indianapolis next week when it heads to Oakland to face the Raiders on Saturday.
Vikings: Minnesota hits the road for the final time this season for a crucial showdown with NFC North rival Green Bay on Saturday. The Vikings beat the Packers in Week 2.