T.Y. Hilton injury not serious

MRI came back negative on Colts wide receiver's hamstring, which means he hopefully returns to practice this week.

T.Y. Hilton’s left hamstring injury likely won't affect him for the playoffs.

Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said Monday that the magnetic resonance imaging exam on his No. 1 wide receiver came back negative and that Hilton could return to the practice field this week.

“We’re hopeful that T.Y. will be back at practice hopefully Wednesday, if not Thursday,” Pagano said in a news conference transcript provided by the team.

The pass catcher exited in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s 17-10 home win over Houston. His left hamstring was wrapped at game’s end, when the Colts celebrated a second consecutive AFC South Division title.

Hilton is having the best season of his three-year NFL career. He leads the Colts with 82 receptions for 1,345 yards and his seven touchdown catches are second to tight end Dwayne Allen with eight.

The 25-year-old pass catcher has equaled his previous season best in receptions set last season, has 262 more receiving yards than 2013 and his touchdown total ties his previous best as a rookie in 2012.

The speedy, elusive receiver has demanded double teams in most games, but still manages to get open, be it as a deep threat or on crossing routes. He had a season-high 10 receptions in a 25-24 victory at Cleveland two weeks ago and a career-high 223 yards receiving in a 33-28 win at Houston on Oct. 9.

He’s had six 100-yard receiving games this season, giving him 16 for his career after putting up five in each of his first two seasons.

The Colts (10-4) have clinched an automatic playoff berth entering Sunday’s game at Dallas (10-4). They currently hold the AFC’s No. 3 playoff seed.

Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.

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