INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton today spoke to the media via video conference. What did he have to say about his potential recovery timeline to be activated off the NFI list, how he's approaching entering a contract year in 2020, why the Colts are "about to be a problem" for opposing defenses and more?
You can catch that entire session above, but here are some top takeaways:
» Placed on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) list to begin training camp, Hilton expects to be back on the field soon: This one's pretty short and sweet — while Hilton, who has been nursing a hamstring injury, currently counts towards the team's 80-man offseason roster, he must be physically cleared before he can be activated and return to the practice field.
The veteran receiver says he's expecting to get that clearance any day now.
"That's not gonna be a problem," Hilton said of his hamstring injury. "I'm feeling better; feeling like myself. Probably got maybe a couple more days, another week, but they're not going to rush me out there. … So it's up to me and them and the training staff, man, and we'll go from there."
In fact, Hilton, who turns 31 in November, doesn't believe he's lost anything in terms of his athletic ability and quickness out on the field.
"I mean, me working out this offseason, I actually felt faster," Hilton said. "Felt faster, got bigger. So I can't wait."
» Entering the final year of his contract, Hilton isn't sweating his future in Indy (or anywhere else for that matter): Simply put, Hilton has been one of the greatest wide receivers in Colts franchise history. He ranks fourth in team history in receptions (552) and receiving yards (8,598), seventh in receiving touchdowns (45) and second in receiving yards per game (72.9).
In most of those categories, Hilton trails only Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne and Raymond Berry — two Hall of Famers (Harrison and Berry) and another sure to join them in Canton soon (Wayne).
But entering his ninth season in Indy in 2020, Hilton isn't really ready to start thinking about his contract situation, where he could end up next season or when he could possibly begin considering retirement. He just wants to play ball and let everything else play out the way it's going to play out.
"I mean, it's my last (year) on my contract, so, you know, it is what it is," Hilton said. "So we're going to concentrate on right now, and then at the end of the season, we'll go from there.
"Right now I'm not thinking about it. I'm just thinking about this team and where we're at right now, especially with me just trying to get better, get back out there with my teammates," Hilton continued. "And just being around the guys, it's just been a lot of fun."
Hilton said he's unsure whether a potential contract extension with the Colts could be worked out by the start of the regular season or if the team might want to wait it out; he's cool however it works out.
"I honestly don't know," Hilton said. "It could be my last year, it could not be; we could get an extension, we could not. So, I mean, I'm just going out there and playing it out. If this is my last year in here I'll give everything I got, no matter what. Even when I'm on the field, I don't really concentrate on that. That's between Chris (Ballard), Mr. (Jim) Irsay and my agent. So that's up to them. My body of work speaks for itself, so you know, (the) ball's in their court."
» Hilton is looking forward to seeing how all the Colts' weapons — both those returning and those new to the team — mesh together on offense: Colts general manager Chris Ballard had a clear initiative this offseason after evaluating the team's offense — he wanted more explosiveness.
While the team is returning tons of talent and potential home run hitters at the skill positions, the team would go out and add a gunslinger at quarterback in Philip Rivers, college football's top running back in Jonathan Taylor, an all-around threat at wide receiver in Michael Pittman Jr. and a proven veteran tight end in Trey Burton.
Considering the fact Hilton and fellow speedy wide receiver Parris Campbell both hope to bounce back from injury-plagued 2019 seasons, on top of other returning weapons like Marlon Mack and Nyheim Hines at running back and Zach Pascal at wide receiver, and the Horseshoe could be turning some heads in 2020.
"Adding Pittman to this receiving corps with Zach, me, Parris — it's going to be fun," Hilton said. "We've got a lot of guys that can do different things; you know, very versatile. We've got a lot of speed, we've got a lot of height, big bodies.
"We've got Jack Doyle at tight end, Mo (Alie-Cox), Trey (Burton), and our running backs are pretty special," Hilton continued. "So you're just going to have to look out, 'cause we're about to be a problem in Indy."
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