Mike Hilton said holdout “hasn’t even crossed my mind”


Mike Hilton is not under contract for 2019, having left his $645,000 exclusive-rights tender unsigned. That’s as far as his displeasure has gone.

The cornerback, the Steelers’ only player without a contract, showed up for all of the team’s offseason work. He promises to show up to training camp, too.

“That hasn’t even crossed my mind,” Hilton said of a holdout, via Joe Rutter of the Tribune-Review. “I’m here for the team. I’m going to be here and try to help the team win games.”

Left tackle Alejandro Villanueva used the same strategy in 2017, declining to sign his tender and getting a four-year, $24 million deal only hours after reporting to training camp. Hilton has discussed his contract situation with Villanueva.

“It worked out for [Villanueva] in the long run,” HIlton said. “We’ll see how it turns out in the next month or so. I’m doing all I can to be here and to show them I want to be here.”

Hilton, 25, became the starting slot cornerback in 2017 and has made three interceptions, 14 pass breakups, five sacks and 111 tackles in two seasons.