Manto Te’o has seemingly distanced himself from the Lennay Kekua scandal as much as possible, and his name is finally being attached to football once again. But even before the dead girlfriend hoax rocked the sports world, there were major questions about Te’o skill as an NFL player, and his slow combine time didn’t do much to put to rest any doubters. But Te’o has begun to have better days, and that’s all the national media needs to place him back in the first round of this month’s NFL Draft.
Everyone wants to know where Te’o will be drafted, and according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, the Minnesota Vikings are a “possibility” to draft Te’o with one of their two first-round picks.
Vikes are possibility for Manti Te’oRT @612capper:best guesses on Vikings first round choices?i’m leaning both defense; WRin rd 2
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) April 4, 2013
Drafting Te’o in the first round seems like s stretch, but it’s not a total impossibility and Te’o going to the Vikings actually holds water. Minnesota has two first round picks after trading Percy Harvin to the Seattle Seahawks and it’s widely believed that one of the two picks will be spent on a defensive player. As of now, the Vikings middle linebacker is something called Tyrone McKenzie — hardly impressive.
In addition to that, general manager Rick Spielman has a history of drafting Notre Dame players, as he’s spent high draft picks on Kyle Rudolph and Harrison Smith, both of whom are former Domers anc both are now massive pieces of the Vikings future.
To still blast Te’o for the girlfriend story is a bit childish, but his skills as a potential pro are fair game and it’s worth noting he’s still not a solid first round talent. But the national media is invested in the idea that he is and they’re selling it to the public. Te’o to the Vikings makes sense, but if he goes to them, it’s likely that it’s in the second round and the Vikings won’t be wasting a first rounder on Te’o.