Draft Capsule: MLB Manti Te'o

Draft Capsule: MLB Manti Te'o

March 28, 2013, 10:15 am
Share This Post

Manti Te'o (MLB), Notre Dame

6-1 | 243 lbs.

2012 Stats:

113 tackles, 1 1/5 sacks, 7 interceptions

Projection:

Late 1st round

Strengths:

Te'o's instincts and ability to read offenses are his top assets -- and were big reasons why he went from no interceptions in 2011 to seven in 2012. He's a good run-stopper and hits gaps well. He has a great motor -- he's someone you'll never catch taking a play off, and always works to get through whatever blocks a team throws at him. Work ethic is great, and despite the Lennay Kekua saga could develop into a leader on a team.

Weaknesses:

Isn't viewed by everyone as a three-down linebacker. While seven interceptions at the college level were a step up, questions remain about his ability to cover NFL tight ends and receivers -- specifically, about his quickness and speed downfield. Te'o doesn't have great tackling form and will occasionally miss on a hit. He definitely benefited from having a skilled defensive tackle (Louis Nix) in front of him last year at Notre Dame, to what extent we don't know.

Fit for the Bears:

There's an obvious fit here, with D.J. Williams being signed as a one-year stopgap after the team and Brian Urlacher parted ways. If Te'o is still available at No. 20, it'd make for an interesting pick as to what hole the Bears decide to fill on their roster.