Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA
Telesco deserves credit for keeping his cards close to the vest. Despite visiting San Diego before the draft, there was little belief that the Bolts would actually take Te'o, let alone trade up to draft him.
But that's exactly what they did. There will be a time when Te'o will only be judged by what he does on the field. That day hasn't arrived yet, however. But Te'o will be playing alongside Donald Butler, who will be asked to step up his game now that Shaun Phillips is in Denver.
It's hard to remember how Te'o was playing before the Alabama game. Of course, there is the fear that the national championship game represented a Brian Bosworth-like defrauding. However, Te'o's fall from grace will lessen the expectations drastically.
If he can grow into a solid starter, this pick will be deemed a success. But anytime you trade up to draft a player, there is an added stigma. It took a Pro Bowl berth to erase it. Even after getting to Honolulu, Ryan Mathews is still saddled by it.