Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o has been living life under the microscope since his poor performance in the BCS national championship game and the catfishing scandal that quickly followed. At the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium, all eyes were on Te’o as scouts watched their stop clocks to see Te’o’s speed.
Unfortunately for the star linebacker, who came in with a 4.82 40-yard dash time that was disappointing and put his first-round status in question.
On Tuesday, Te’o had an opportunity to improve on his 40-yard dash time at the Notre Dame Pro Day and it appears that he has done just that.
Per Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports:
Manti Te’o just ran unofficially a 4.75 40 according to ESPN at Notre Dame’s Pro Day.
— Bruce Feldman (@BFeldmanCBS) March 26, 2013
Other reports had him as low as a 4.68. The time is an improvement, but still is far from being an impressive number.
But when you watch Te’o play, he doesn’t need the long speed to be a valuable asset to your defense.
Te’o is an instinctual linebacker that relies on his ability to quickly read plays and he uses he football IQ to always find his way to the ball. The disappointing national championship game film remains on everyone’s minds, but that doesn’t erase what he had done in the years before.
Regardless of Te’o’s 40-yard dash time, he will be a first-round pick in April’s draft.