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Sun., Jul. 19, 2015 7:30 AM PDT
Tue., Nov. 24, 2015 10:00 AM PST
Chargers Trade Up, Select Manti Te'o
The San Diego Chargers traded up to select Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o. Many predicted the star linebacker would be a first round pick, but the Bolts were able to get him at 38th overall by giving up their second and fourth round picks.
Here is the prospect profile I wrote about Te'o earlier this year:
"So much has been written about Manti Te’o off the field since the season ended that it’s easy to forget he was one of the most dominant forces on it during the 2012 campaign.
A hard-hitting player with natural instincts, Te’o finished second in Heisman Trophy voting by recording 101 tackles, seven interceptions and 1.5 sacks during his senior season at Notre Dame. His tremendous year earned him numerous accolades and honors including the Maxwell Trophy, the Dick Butkus Award, the Nagurski Award, the Lombardi Trophy and the Bednarik Award on his way to being named the Walter Camp National Player of the Year. He finished his illustrious four-year career ranking third all-time in Notre Dame history with 437 tackles, and was only the second player in the school’s history to post three consecutive 100-plus tackle seasons.
Still, a disappointing championship game performance against Alabama combined with the “catfishing” incident kicked off a rough offseason for him. It didn’t get any better with a relatively poor showing at the Scouting Combine where his metrics ranked low compared to most other linebackers.
However, scouts and NFL pundits alike didn’t anticipate him finishing amongst the elites during those drills as he is the type of player who puts it all together on game day. A rock-solid hitter, Te’o excels both between the tackles as well as in coverage. A very strong leader on the field who is vocal with his teammates, he takes complete control of the defense. He also plays a fearless brand of football, throwing his body around with reckless abandon.
Overall, Te’o is a player who some view as one of the top prospects available while others are wary of him. Where he ends up being selected will be one of the biggest storylines come draft day."