The San Diego Chargers' defense took a big hit in the first half of Sunday's AFC divisional-round matchup against the Denver Broncos, when rookie linebacker Manti Te'o was ruled out of the game with a concussion.
Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report relayed the news shortly after Te'o was declared out:
Manti out with a concussion.— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) January 12, 2014
Te'o appeared to have suffered the injury while trying to tackle Denver running back Knowshon Moreno, as his head hit the shoulder pad of teammate Jahleel Addae in a scrum near the line of scrimmage. It's a significant loss for the Chargers, as Te'o had become a consistent contributor to a San Diego defense that has been key to the team's late-season push into the playoffs.
It's not like Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning needs any more holes to try to expose. At halftime, Denver held a 14-0 lead with a trip to the AFC Championship on the line.
San Diego selected Te'o in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft and he made 13 starts this year, totaling 61 tackles in the regular season.