Newly drafted linebacker Manti Te'o talks with media in San Diego about whether he's prepared for the attention of playing in the NFL.
Manti Te'o is arguably the most controversial NFL Draft pick in history. But, not because of any dispute about his play on the field.
Te'o became a household name because he fell for a bizarre hoax involving a make-believe girl, then failed to tell the truth after he found out about it.
College kids have done a lot worse, and he's apologized in a very public forum. On Saturday, Te'o was asked about his private life that became so public, and how he's dealt with it the last four months.
"I found time for myself," said Te'o. "I found a lot of peace and joy just hanging out with my friends, hanging out with my family. Going back to Hawaii was the best thing to happen to me. Hold strong to your faith and know that everything happens for a reason and there's nothing that God will put in front of you that He won't pull you through. When you have that faith and that strength, knowing that everything will be OK, there's nothing that people can throw at you that you can't handle."
That pretty much sums it up. People like to talk about NFL road trips being difficult environments to conquer. For Manti Te'o, going in to the hostile crowds of Oakland or Philadelphia will seem like a cake walk.
"After the couple of months that I've been through, I'm pretty prepared," said Te'o. "As far as going in to another stadium, you can't worry about that stuff. You're with your family, you're with your brothers out there and that's all that matters."
Te'o (who was at times during the press gathering quiet, respectful, funny and engaging) also talked about football (what a novel concept!) and how another Charger had an impact on his life. That would be Junior Seau.
"Me being a Polynesian Samoan kid, you look up to Junior," said Te'o. "He's a Samoan man who was a trailblazer for kids like me."
The biggest take away for Chargers fans is probably this. Manti Te'o is just a normal, 22-year-old kid who likes to play football, and happens to be very, very good at it.