INDIANAPOLIS — According to Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni, wide receiver T.Y. Hilton is "obsessed with getting better."
And after what Hilton considered a "down" year in 2017 in which he failed to reach 1,000 receiving yards for the first time since he was a rookie in 2012 — despite the fact he was selected to his fourth Pro Bowl — he went head-first into his training for 2018.
Hilton was noticeably determined during the offseason program and minicamp, telling the media, "All the great ones, they find a way to just continue to keep working. Since we came off the field in Week 17 — I probably took a day or two off — but I just kept working. I just wanted to get better."
Just a day or two off? For a player who has no issues playing through injury, that shows dedication to improvement.
This is Sirianni's first season being around Hilton, but he has already made a good impression on the new coordinator.
"He continues to want to excel and get better," Sirianni said of Hilton. "With what we talk about, he's obsessed with getting better, obsessed with finishing, obsessed with his craft."
Hilton's hard work isn't only a benefit to his game, though. The Colts spent a couple draft picks on receivers Reece Fountain and Deon Cain this spring, plus they have several other young receivers on the roster. Sirianni pointed out that Hilton's consistency in practice and knack for not taking reps off is a perfect example to the younger guys about what it takes to be a pro.
"It comes across to the other guys that are trying to learn to be pros," Sirianni said. "What it really does is it helps the Deon Cain's and it helps the Nyheim Hines' and it helps all the young guys just see how it's supposed to be done. That's just such an invaluable tool to have, somebody like him. He may not be (the best) vocally all the time, but it's day in, day out, what he does with his body, what he does in practice. That's contagious and it's nice to have that on this team."
Between Hilton, new wide receivers coach Kevin Patullo and the presence of volunteer receivers coach Reggie Wayne, the young wideouts on the roster are in good hands.
However, Hilton has business on his mind, and that means redeeming what was a disappointing season in 2017.
"I have to get back to being me," Hilton said of the 2018 season.