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How Manti Te’o's Poor Combine Affects New York Giants Draft Plans

February 27th, 2013 at 8:30 AM
By Casey Sherman

After the college season came to an end, many New York Giants fans drooled over the thought of drafting Notre Dame stand-out linebacker Manti Te'o. However, he was projected by most experts to be selected early in the first-round, before the Giants would have a shot at him. But after a lackluster performance in the National Championship Game against Alabama, and now a weak showing at the NFL Combine, there is a strong chance he will be available when the Giants are up at pick 19. With all the controversy surrounding him combined with his less than stellar combine results, is it really worth it for the Giants to use the first round pick on him? That answer should be no.

'BCS National Championship Game, Jan. 7, 2013' photo (c) 2013, Matt Velazquez - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

General Manager Jerry Reese has stated that he is more interested in what Te'o can do off the field than what happens in his personal life. He also said that he will not rule out drafting the Heisman runner-up…but that was prior to Te'o's showing at the NFL Combine.

Te'o's measurables were less than stellar. He was measured at 6' 1.25" and weighed in at 241 lbs., which is average compared to the rest of the linebackers. His 40-yard dash time was perhaps the biggest disappointment, clocking in at 4.82 seconds. He was recorded at 7.13 seconds in the cone drill, a 9' 5" in the broad jump and 33" in the vertical jump.

Scouts feel Te'o's lack of speed will make it difficult for him in coverage, causing some experts to believe he can only be a two down linebacker at the NFL level.

So does it make sense for the Giants to pull the trigger on him if he's there when they're picking? Probably not. History also says Te'o won't be the Giants' selection. The G-men haven't selected a linebacker in the first-round since they drafted Carl Banks out of Michigan State in 1984. Even if they do decide to go with a linebacker, there are other candidates such as Alec Ogletree, who possesses elite speed and athleticism, who is arguably a better fit and should be available when the Giants pick.

The Giants will likely address other needs with their first round pick, perhaps offensive line or adding a pass rusher. But if Te'o's draft stock continues to drop it wouldn't be a surprise to see the Giants pick him in the second round.

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Tags: Alec Ogletree, Football, Jerry Reese, Manti Te'o, New York, New York Giants, NFL

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29 Responses to “How Manti Te’o's Poor Combine Affects New York Giants Draft Plans”

  1.  Samardzija says:

    I dont think his combine was that bad. Hes 10 yard split, broad and vert were all fine. He has great instincts and is quick which are more important attributes for an lb. The combine hasnt changed my view on him at all. Hes still a second rounder.

    If we do look into linebackers I really like Zavier Gooden, immense upside on this kid and I think he could be a great addition. Dont like spending a first round pick on a backer though.

  2.  kujo says:

    I doubt we were ever seriously considering him in the first place. I think he’s going to be a very good player, and I believe he’ll be a better linebacker than we’ve had in quite some time. But I’d imagine that if Reese were to finally pull the trigger on a linebacker in the 1st, it would be someone with more of a 3-down set, and Te’o, at 240 lbs, just isn’t big enough to be that guy in the NFL. I doubt he’d be able to do it at 250, which is where he played at last year.

  3.  kujo says:

    wrdrag,

    Thank you very much for the pragmatic advice. We actually are already seeing a marriage counselor as part of our marriage prep. The city of Orlando offers a discounted rate on the purchase of a marriage license if the two people enroll in one of those programs, and we figured every little bit helps! It’s been an illuminating couple of sessions thus far. Without getting into the details, the last year of our lives has been very hectic and there has been more than 1 awful event that has transpired. And yes, our relationship was tested (understatement), but we believe we are emerging stronger, which is ostensibly what the priest we are speaking with said as well.

  4.  The Original G Man says:

    FYI, Mayock, Schefter and Peter King all say he will not fall into round 2.

  5.  demo3356 says:

    I dont believe Te’o has any effect on the Giants. Dont think they were ever considering drafting him. The Giants like LB’s that can fly, guys like Williams, Boley and Rivers.. Not sure the Giants or any other 4/3 team is interested in a smallish LB that can’t run.. I see him going late first early 2nd to a 3/4 team..

    •  Krow says:

      Te’o would be living in the ice tub if we drafted him.

      •  rlhjr says:

        Repost for Krow from last thread.

        Yes sir. Speaking of which….I know it’s crazy but one draft has Floyd falling to 19. If that happens and Reese passes on him I like Kujo famously asserted will “flip a “$h|+”…………………………

        Still the funniest thing ever out of his keyboard given the tumult about JPP doing back flips LMFAO

  6.  GOAT56 says:

    Jarvis Jones is a LB I hadn’t been considering in large part because it was a forgone conclusion he would be gone way before our pick. With his medical situation it’s not impossible he falls to us in a Prince like way. Jones is interesting because much like a Sintim he would be making a conversion from a 3-4 OLB to 4-3 SAM so there’s some natural hesitation on my part. But with his body type and athleticism it would seem more like Von Miller making that transition. Or at least a poor man’s version. Jones is a LB if his medical part passes you have to look at very strongly. His pass rushing ability also gives us another option on 3rd downs to inject some more youth, talent and versatility into the mix.

    Also another LB I can’t totally look past is Ogletree. His combine numbers were good but not great like I expected. However, he still has his pro-day and he weighed in at 242 which was one of the major concerns about him playing MLB. We don’t normally gamble on character risks but Ogletree could project to be the game changing type of MLB that could really flourish in Fewell’s scheme.

    Teo is just not the impact type of player I’m looking for us to draft at #19. If we were at #32 like last year with the same needs I would feel differently.

  7.  GOAT56 says:

    Interesting:

    Top 50 Free Agency Forecast

    27. Defensive end Osi Umenyiora — Still an effective situational pass rusher at age 31, Umenyiora registered six sacks and two forced fumbles last season while playing 61 percent of the Giants’ defensive snaps. The Bucs are starving for an improved pass rush, and Osi is familiar with Tampa Bay defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan from his five-year stint (2005-09) on the Giants’ staff.

    Free Agent Forecast: Buccaneers on a three-year, $20 million contract.

    29. Left tackle Will Beatty — Gifted athletically and 28 years old, Beatty graded out as a top-ten left tackle in Pro Football Focus’ 2012 ratings and is in the midst of his prime. The Giants aren’t willing to pay Beatty franchise-tag money, but do want to complete a long-term deal. Look for the G-Men to get Beatty re-signed without breaking the bank. About $6.5 million annually ought to get it done.

    Free Agent Forecast: Giants on a five-year, $32.5 million contract.

    35. Tight end Martellus Bennett — Bennett fit the Giants well in 2012, flashing Pro Bowl-caliber ability when he was healthy and the offense clicked. John Carlson’s $25 million over five years should be a baseline in negotiations. Bennett is only 26 and could bet on himself in the short term.

    Free Agent Forecast: Giants on a three-year, $16 million contract.

    Best of the Rest Free Agents: Kenny Phillips, Connor Barwin, Israel Idonije, Rashard Mendenhall, Bradley Fletcher, Glenn Dorsey, Jermon Bushrod, Bryant McKinnie, Cary Williams, Richard Seymour, Matt Moore, Fred Davis, Ahmad Bradshaw, Mike Jenkins, James Casey, Brandon Moore, Ronde Barber, Shaun Phillips, LaRon Landry, Leodis McKelvin, Pat Chung, Charles Woodson, Jerome Felton, Dannell Ellerbe, Jerraud Powers, Victor Butler, Glover Quin.

    http://www.rotoworld.com/articles/nfl/42620/309/top-50-free-agency-forecast?pg=2

    •  The Original G Man says:

      “LOL” at this:

      “The Bucs are starving for an improved pass rush, and Osi is familiar with Tampa Bay defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan from his five-year stint (2005-09) on the Giants’ staff.”

  8.  Krow says:

    Foxlin … you asked about Seattle … in addition to both their starting safeties …

    http://blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks/2012/11/20/seahawks-safety-winston-guy-suspended-4-games-for-violating-nfls-performance-enhancing-drug-policy/

    Adderall … among other drugs … are used as masking agents to hide steroids. That’s why they’re banned.

    The Seahawks are using PEDs on a mass scale.

    •  Krow says:

      Safeties=CBs … I’m a lousy typist.

    •  F0XLIN says:

      Thanks Krow, I didn’t realize it was that wide spread. Does the NFL ever release the drug they failed for, or just PED and the player can say whatever he wants?

      •  Krow says:

        They usually say what it was. Then all the fanboys whine about how Adderall is not a PED, not knowing the real reason behind taking it.

        The other thing is that suddenly Seattle became overly aggressive. They were in people’s faces. Obviously cranked. I thought ‘roid rage’ right out of the gate.

        There’s something really wrong up there.

  9.  Krow says:

    I’m going against the grain here … but I predict Te’o will be selected in the second round. Probably within 5 or 10 picks, but second.

    There’s a lot of talent this year that doesn’t have the baggage. And while his Combine didn’t suck it didn’t flash either.

    I think he can play … and in the right situation he’ll have a solid career. I don’t see him at a Pro Bowl level … but he’s no bum. He’d make us forget about Blackburn and Herzlich in a hurry. However if we don’t use pick 19 on him … and we won’t … then we’re not getting another chance.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      Most projections have him late first, early second right now. But he also has his pro-day to help his 40 time.

      •  Krow says:

        Yep, if he can drop his 40 time then all bets are off. He’s late 1st if that happens. Otherwise I’m sticking to early-to-mid 2nd. Like Laurenitis and Maualuga. Maybe even a half dozen selections further down.

    •  Krow says:

      I’d love to have the guy, but do we need him? What if Brewer can play and we sign Beatty as has been rumored? Then he’s another #1 pick sitting on our bench. Of course that’s a Giants’ tradition, and from that perspective makes total sense.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        I would be shocked if he made it to us. Before the combine he looked shaky at best to make it to us but after showing the type of athletic ability he did, he’s more likely to go top 10 than fall to us.

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