In order to familiarize fans with some of the top names in the 2013 NFL Draft, Chargers.com will be highlighting a different prospect each weekday leading up to the first day of the draft on April 25th.
We continue the series with a scouting report of Notre Dame inside linebacker Manti Te’o.
Name: Manti T’eo
School: Notre Dame
Weight: 241 LBS
Position: Inside Linebacker
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.
40-yard Dash: 4.82
Vertical Jump: 33.0 inches
Broad Jump: 113.0 inches
3-Cone Drill: 7.13
The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed above do not represent the opinions or policies of the San Diego Chargers’ front office staff, coaches or executives.