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What Dez Bryant’s Deal Means for Colts, T.Y. Hilton


Earlier today, the Dallas Cowboys and their superstar wideout Dez Bryant agreed on a new 5-year, $70 million dollar contract with $45 million guaranteed just ahead of Wednesday’s 4 PM EST NFL deadline for franchise-tagged players. Soon after, the Denver Broncos and their own superstar wideout Demaryius Thomas agreed on a new highly lucrative deal as well.

Nov 3, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) runs the ball against the New York Giants during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Of course, any mega-contract handed to a wideout is of significant importance to the Indianapolis Colts because their very own star wideout in T.Y. Hilton will be a free agent at season’s end, as he enters the last year of his rookie contract.

Hilton is coming off a breakout season with the Colts, in which he caught 82 receptions for 1,345 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns, making his first career Pro Bowl appearance. The 25 year old wideout was rewarded with his exceptional play by being named #35 in the NFL’s Top 100.

As far as contracts go, Bryant’s freshly inked $45 million guaranteed is the most given to any wideout in NFL history, even the Detroit Lions Calvin Johnson, who’s still widely regarded as the best wide receiver in football:

Don’t forget the name Mike Wallace and his $30 million in the above ESPN graphic either, it will come in handy later during this piece.

It’s worth noting that Hilton isn’t considered quite in the Top 5, truly elite spectrum of superstar wideouts like Bryant ( now $45M Gtd.), Johnson ($43.75M Gtd.), and even Thomas (now $43.5M Gtd.). However, he’s going to get paid a king’s ransom regardless, sooner rather than later.

According to one of the premier contract valuation web sites available in Spotrac, Hilton will be closer to the $30M guaranteed of Mike Wallace (glad you remembered!) than the $45M of Bryant, but either way he’s about to get seriously paid all things considered:

Set to enter the last year of his rookie contract that pays him $1,705,850, a bargain for a wideout of Hilton’s caliber in today’s game, the latter may not necessarily want to cut the Colts a significant discount at the negotiating table. He’s re-hired “super-agent” Drew Rosenhaus, which could ultimately be a telling sign in itself.

It’s worth noting that Hilton previously discussed his contract earlier this offseason:

"“If they want to pay me, they’ll pay me,” Hilton said. “It takes both sides to come to an agreement. I leave that up to my agent and just go out there and have fun.”"

Given those comments, the Colts may very well have to prepare to “back up the Brink’s truck” come next offseason due to the current booming market for NFL wideouts.

It may not be the $45 million guaranteed of Bryant, but it could come closer to that benchmark than perhaps initially thought, especially given this recent Hilton tweet regarding today’s events:

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