Manti Te'o hopes NFL teams focus on his play, and ignore his obvious mental issues
Teams will want to know how Te'o was so blatantly duped for so long, and also why he lied to fans and the media months after he learned the truth.
Te'o, on the other hand, is hoping that teams will focus on his play on the field, not his mental issues off of it.
"What I did on the field is what I did on the field. I don't think what I did with this whole situation, I don't understand how it takes away from what I did on the field."
Yes, that's true. It really has nothing to do about what he has done on the field. Which is why Te'o wants people to focus on his on-field performance.
But is he really so sure about that?
Te'o looked about as bad as any Heisman contender could ever look against Alabama in the BCS Championship game, and that's the best possible comparison to NFL-caliber talent.
Against USC, he disappeared for most of the game, aside from a lucky interception that essentially landed in his lap.
Sure, he may have looked good against the Little Sisters of the Poor who made up most of Notre Dame's schedule, but against top teams, Te'o was neutralized.
The best thing that Te'o can say about himself is that he was a Heisman contender.
But... why was he a Heisman contender? Is it really because he was arguably the most outstanding college football player in the country?
Nope. Of course not. He wasn't even close, to be honest.
He was a Heisman winner because he had a great story, and people are suckers for a great story. His on-field play was pretty good, but nothing spectacular or worthy of all the accolades that he received.
He'll still get picked around the middle of the first round, but let me say this now: He'll be a bust. Plain and simple.
He's a pretty good college linebacker, and he looked pretty good against players who will never make money playing football on Sundays. But when he played the big boys, he looked lost and completely ineffective.
I'd take him in the 3rd round or later, if he were available. But that's it. He's got "bust" written all over him. Take that to the bank.