The most fascinating question of the draft isn’t who’ll go No. 1 or where the top quarterbacks will land. It’ll be what happens to Manti Te’o?
At one point, the Notre Dame linebacker was considered a top-10 pick. Then Alabama made him look foolish in the BCS championship game. And then an Internet dating hoax made him look even more foolish — and gullible, whether he was the victim or not.
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This year’s three-day draft
begins Thursday, April 25 in New York.
April 25: Round 1, 7 p.m.
April 26: Rounds 2-3, 5:30
April 27: Rounds 4-7, 11 a.m.
TV: ESPN, NFL Network
ON THE CLOCK
April 18: Defensive backs
April 19: Linebackers
April 20: Defensive linemen
April 21: Offensive linemen
April 22: Receivers
April 23: Running backs
April 24: Quarterbacks
The five best linebacker prospects
1. Dion Jordan (6-6, 248, Oregon): Former tight end converted to OLB in the spring of 2010 shows exceptional athleticism. Could go as high as No. 2, but warning: Still raw.
2. Jarvis Jones (6-3, 245, Georgia): A search-and-destroy guy who forces a lot of fumbles. Yet some teams will steer clear because of a spinal stenosis condition.
3. Barkevious Mingo (6-4, 241, LSU): Only began playing as a junior in high school and has come so far so fast. Has a body type that can fill out more, but has never played OLB.
4. Manti Te’o, (6-1, 241, Notre Dame): At some point, you’ve got to get back to the film and see that this guy made plenty of game-changing plays (just not against Alabama).
5. Alec Ogletree (6-3, 242, Georgia): If you can get over his four-game suspension in 2012 reportedly for violating the Dawgs’ substance-abuse policy, there’s much to like.
■Keep an eye on: Kevin Minter, LSU. Always give Bayou Bengal defenders a long look, especially a rugged inside force like Minter who has a special talent for diagnosing plays.
Other Big 12, state prospects
1. Arthur Brown (6-1, 241, Kansas State): Could play inside or out. Only his size is keeping him from first-round talk.
2. Sean Porter (6-1, 229, Texas A&M): Played LB in both a 3-4 and 4-3, and can rush or cover. Probably third/fourth round.
3. A.J. Klein (6-1, 250, Iowa State): Three-year starter has great insincts; projected to be a mid-round selection.
4. Jonathan Stewart (6-4, 240, Texas A&M): A big-bodied LB who held his own in the SEC. A possible sixth-rounder.
5. Jake Knott (6-2, 243, Iowa State): Another three-year starter, he averaged 10 tackles a game as a Cyclone.
LB: 2012’S FIRST PICK
Player Rd/Overall Team College
Luke Kuechly 1/9 Carolina Bost. Coll.
LB: 2012’S BEST PICK
Player Rd/Overall Team College
Bobby Wagner 2/47 Seattle Utah State
Utah State’s hardly known as Linebacker U, but Wagner turned in a solid first season and became a key part to the Seahawks’ highly-respected defense.
1. Kansas City
9. N.Y. Jets
11. San Diego
13. Tampa Bay
15. New Orleans
16. St. Louis
19. N.Y. Giants
22. St. Louis
26. Green Bay
29. New England
31. San Francisco