It’s time to have a little fun. With the NFL Draft 11 days away, it’s time to put one of this year’s top NFL prospects into our hypothetical NFL to Rugby 7s series. This week features Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o. Te’o is the 24th best rated prospect in this year’s NFL Draft according to Scout’s Inc. Now imagine if Te’o can’t handle all of the heckling in a NFL locker room due to his fake girlfriend extravaganza and decides to quit football and give rugby a try. You never know right!?
Manti Te’o (New Position: Prop) Te’o saved the best for last in his senior season at Notre Dame. The Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year was not only the runner-up to Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel for the Heisman Trophy Award but lead his school to it’s first BCS National Championship Game appearance in school history, which they lost to Alabama 42-14. Te’o finished his senior season with seven interceptions which is the most by a linebacker in FBS history since 2001. Te’o’s knack for intercepting the ball tells me he not only has a great set of hands and vision. Te’o finished his college career totaling 437 which ranks him third all-time in Notre Dame history.
From a rugby perspective… At 6’1″, 240 lbs. Te’o has the prototypical frame to be a prop in Rugby 7s. The Notre Dame linebacker repped out 225 lbs. on the bench 21 times at the NFL Combine proving he has the strength to go along with the size to be a successful prop in Rugby 7s. The Maxwell Award winner has a very stocky build and short neck which will also help him out in rugby. Te’o’s ability to fill the hole on a run play also gives great confidence that he can match-up with the toughest on the rugby pitch.
What do you think? Do you agree with me or not?