Hilton sees a little Andrew Luck in Carson Wentz.
Count Carson Wentz among the many folks around Indianapolis who wanted to see Hilton return.
Hilton said he and Wentz have been "constantly texting" recently, and among the messages the new Colts' quarterback sent to the 31-year-old receiver: "I hope we can get you here, man. I want you to stay here. I want to be able to throw passes to you," Hilton relayed.
And the admiration is mutual: Hilton is excited to work with Wentz, who he said "has some Andrew Luck traits."
"He can get out of the pocket, make the incredible throws," Hilton continued. "He's a special talent, especially when he's standing up in the pocket, delivering throws. To be able to avoid guys and make plays with his legs or with his arms, he's a special talent."
Hilton had 76 catches, 1,270 yards and six touchdowns in 2018, the last year he played with Luck. He averaged a career high 90.7 yards per game that year, too.
But what Hilton said he's been looking at a lot with Wentz is his ability to extend plays outside the pocket.
"His skillset is pretty unique and pretty special – his ability to get out of the pocket and make plays with his arms or legs," Hilton said. "It can only up my game. … Because the DBs don't like to cover for that long, so once you break away from them and the quarterback is able to extend the play and you're wide open and it's a big play."
Reggie Wayne played a big part in Hilton's decision to return...
Reggie Wayne played his entire career with the Colts, including the final three years with Hilton. And through Hilton's first foray into unrestricted free agency, he leaned on Wayne every step of the way.
"Reggie really helped me a lot. I thank God for him," Hilton said. "He's a big bro to me and he was there through it all. He helped me through the process, he helped me through everything all the way up to the last minute. He was calling, texting, calling, calling, just kept calling. He was just constantly there for me and he helped me make the right decision."
"Reggie was just helping me with the pros, the cons, just constantly telling me like what I should do, how I should go about it. Whenever I needed him, he was always there for me no matter what. He helped me break down a lot of situations that led to this.
"Mr. (Jim) Irsay just texted me and told me, 'We have a great deal for you and we need to get it done. We need you here. We want you to stay here. You have been great to this organization.' We were able to get it done."
...And so did Colts fans.
Hilton, by the way, saw all of your messages urging him to stay in town. He was surprised by the outpouring of support for him — "I know Indy loves me, but I didn't know they loved me that much," Hilton said — and it all "really touched me from the heart."
Hilton said he had an offer to sign with the Baltimore Ravens, but ultimately the pull of sticking in Indianapolis — and possibly playing his entire career with the Colts — was too great to pass up.
"It's very special. Not many guys can say that they did that (play their entire career with one team), so for me to be able to get that chance, it means a lot," Hilton said. "I love it here. The moment I had the chance to sign back here, it was only right."
See some of the best images of Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton.