Last year, the Indianapolis Colts did not have an skill position players named in the initial Pro Bowl roster. This year, they got one in T.Y. Hilton, and punter Pat McAfee made it back to the NFL’s All-Star game.
The Colts’ primary receiver T.Y. Hilton has had another solid season, and as a result, he has been named to his third-straight Pro Bowl.
Hilton has 81 catches for 1,248 receiving yards and six touchdowns entering Week 16. He is approaching his career-highs in receptions and receiving yards with two weeks still remaining this season.
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Also, Hilton ranks in the top 10 in the league in multiple receiving categories. He is ninth in receptions, second in receiving yards, tied for first in 25-yard receptions, third in first-down receptions.
Potentially, He could win the receiving title at season’s end. He currently Hilton trails Julio Jones (1,253 yards) in receiving yards. Jones is currently nursing a nagging toe injury, so his playing time could be limited.
If Hilton does pass Jones, he would be the first Colt to accomplish that since Reggie Wayne in 2007.
Meanwhile, McAfee picks up his second Pro Bowl nomination. His first selection came in 2014. McAfee is regarded as one of the NFL’s best punters and is probably the best punter in the AFC (Johnny Hekker is the best in the NFC).
McAfee is 1st in the NFL in punting average (49.1) and 3rd in net punting average (42.8). He also plays a big role in the Colts’ average defensive drive start at the 26.9-yard line (6th best in the NFL).
The Colts’ defense has not been great this season. So, McAfee’s ability to flip field position or pin opponent down inside their own 20 yard-line has drastically helped Indianapolis’ defense.
There were some notable snubs from this initial roster. Neither quarterback Andrew Luck nor kicker Adam Vinatieri made the team this year. It is important to note there will be late additions made to this list because a handful of players will pull out from the event for numerous reasons.
It is a notable honor to make the NFL Pro Bowl so both Hilton and McAfee deserve props for their good work. Hopefully, a few more Colts will get added on in the following weeks.