It’s official, Manti Te’o has better protection than quarterback Philip Rivers had all season last year with the San Diego Chargers. Even minicamp is fully underway, the media has only had access to speak with the Bolts’ rookie once and that was after the initial rookie portion of minicamp concluded. No one is sure exactly why things have gone this way, but sooner or later Te’o must face the media head on.
This stall tactic is merely delaying the inevitable barrage of questions that are sure to be thrown in Te’o’s direction concerning the whole fake dead girlfriend saga. It remains unknown whether the media mute button has been pressed by Chargers brass, Head Coach Mike McCoy, or at the request of Te’o himself. The only thing that is for sure is that the former Notre Dame All-American must face the music sometime, and that time might as well be now.
You won’t find many analysts that feel like the Chargers did anything less than a remarkable job in this April’s NFL Draft. That is in large part due to getting a player in Te’o who was considered a top 10 prospect for a decent portion of the pre-draft process with the 38th overall selection. His addition on the field is sure to be far more important than anything going on off of it. The drama of his off-field distractions passed long ago, so why prolong the agony of rehashing things any longer than necessary?
What keeping Te’o hidden from the media is accomplishing is actually adding to the problem if you ask me. If he really wants to be just another rookie trying to make a name for himself in the league, Te’o should be subjected to media time and answer any and all questions just like any other player. Perpetuating this stigma that Te’o is immune from the media’s wrath because he is different is the exact opposite of what was supposed to be the attitude coming into this situation.
This may seem trivial on the scale of what’s important to an NFL team, but the Bolts coach McCoy had to deal with the media free-for-all that was Tim Tebow during his time with the Denver Broncos. If this team knows what’s good for it, Te’o will be in front of the media sooner rather than later to eliminate the inevitable moment when he is forced to address the Lennay Kukua fake girlfriend situation. Heck, he may even be able to answer some football related questions, you never know.