Early in the week, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o announced he would be skipping the Senior Bowl. Te’o was openly criticised for not accepting the invitation to Mobile, Alabama and questions about how his NFL Draft stock could be on the decline were starting to rise, as players usually go to all star games to increase their draft status.
After poor performance in the BCS National Championship Game against Alabama, Te’o skipping the game was thought to be a mistake. Te’o had perhaps the worst performance of his Notre Dame career, missing numerous tackles and was out of position on more than a handful of times throughout the game. Getting back on the field with the other top prospects in the country would have given him a chance to silence doubters. He could easily let his on the field performance do the talking, dominating against the best players in the nation.
Since the hoax news broke, getting back on the field is probably in the back of his mind. Actually, football could be in the back of his mind entirely since December 6th, after he received that shocking phone call. No excuses should be made for the poor performance on the field; although, with what he is said to gone through, how could anyone expect him to be the same on or off of the field?
Te’o made the right decision in skipping the Senior Bowl. What a circus that would have been – fielding questions, while attempting to practice? Te’o needs to use this time to clear up the hoax – he has numerous questions to answer, and only time will tell if and when the truth of this bizarre story will be made public.