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Gruden steers clear of Te’o fake girlfriend controversy

Manti Teo AP

When Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o’s name appeared on the list of players to be featured on Jon Gruden’s pre-draft series that ordinarily focuses on quarterbacks, many envisioned Gruden’s Chucky persona grilling Te’o regarding the saga of his fake dead male girlfriend.

But Gruden steered clear of that situation during the 30-minute show, making only indirect reference to it before bringing in former Buccaneers linebacker Derrick Brooks to advise Te’o on how to handle the veterans in an NFL locker room.

“You just gotta be ready to deal with it,” Brooks said.  “And don’t be afraid, man, to make light of yourself.  That’s the icebreaker in every locker room.  You’ve got to be able to make fun of yourself.  You’ve got to.”

When it comes to football, Gruden harped on the read-option play, explaining to Te’o that the middle linebacker has to diagnose the “symptoms of the zone read,” and urging him to “be on a mission . . . finding the ball, solving the problems, and being relentless, man, just like you were at Notre Dame.”

Defensive players throughout the league will be applying that approach to the read option in 2013, and Te’o surely will prefer dealing with the NFL’s newest version of on-field catfishing.

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28 Responses to “Gruden steers clear of Te’o fake girlfriend controversy”
  1. nzayir says: Mar 26, 2013 10:44 PM

    Teo’s not even the best inside linebacker in this draft. Arthur Brown from Kansas State is. Heck I’d even take Ogeltree before him to. He’s an overrated prospect because he went to Notre Dame and ESPN (namely Mel Kiper a Notre Dame fan who once had Teo going number one overall) loves him doesn’t make him any more then a two down thumper in the NFL.

  2. jdc1973 says: Mar 26, 2013 10:49 PM

    Does anybody even care about this guy anymore he’s a fraud

  3. ravensbob says: Mar 26, 2013 10:52 PM

    Teo is a class act. That said, I hope the Ravens draft the “other” ND star, Eifert.

  4. onermedboxer says: Mar 26, 2013 10:55 PM

    Think its awesome future HOFer Derrick Brooks is the first to publicly address Teo on what’s about to happen to the guy
    Brooks is never shy to address the elephant in the room

  5. ratbirdking says: Mar 26, 2013 10:58 PM

    Derrick Brooks is right.

    If Teo just went to the draft in NYC, made a joke about the whole thing (even if he wasnt comfortable about it), it would all be over, and no one would ever make fun him again.

    Own it, just like Robert Downey Jr., and if you own it, no one can use your faults against you.

  6. skinswillsurprise says: Mar 26, 2013 11:00 PM

    RG3, RG3, RG3!!!!!

  7. johnelwayishorsefaced says: Mar 26, 2013 11:00 PM

    What does it say about the character of the average NFL player when it’s considered a given that he’s going to get teased and bullied in his team’s locker room like it’s the elementary school playground? These guys are professional adults with the mentality of children.

  8. gobigred55 says: Mar 26, 2013 11:11 PM

    Just like Te’o steered clear of tackling Eddie Lacy.

  9. true9erfan66 says: Mar 26, 2013 11:13 PM

    I gotta say these quote experts lol are just as bad at the ILB position as qb idk why this is a hard position but it is. I remember when kiper especially was all over the niners for drafting Willis saying he was a reach and to small hmmm good call Mel than I remember just few years ago mcshay and Mel ripped niners again for drafting bowman he was to slow and (didn’t show the natural instincts) hmmm ok good call now both have been all pros and pro bowlers while Willis is considered the best while bowman is top 5 if not top 3 or 2 right behind Willis. Now I’m not saying manti will be anything but basically saying what does Mel or mcshay know. They put there foot in there mouth not once but twice at the position there saying they know about. Man being a draft ((expert)) is the only job in the world u can be wrong all the time and way wrong at least 2 times I know of as a niner fan and still not only have the same job bu still considered and expert. Gotta love the NFL

  10. orivar says: Mar 26, 2013 11:13 PM

    I’d steer clear of it too mainly because it’s stupid. Out of all the controversies I almost immediately got tired of hearing about because they’re stupid, this ranks pretty close to #1. The other spots are shared with things that usually related to Lindsay Lohan & Kim Kardashian…and Tiger Woods.

    It’s not important to know if he was cat fished or not and since I personally don’t know him, why would I give two cents if he’s gay or not?

    Why would anybody?

  11. mazblast says: Mar 26, 2013 11:16 PM

    Of course Gruden wouldn’t go after Te’o. Chucky’s an ESPN employee, and ESPN has been PROmoting this stiff for a long time. The last thing the Eternally Self-Promoting Network wants to do is make someone they’ve been pimping look bad.

  12. brintfatre says: Mar 26, 2013 11:25 PM

    Gruden is a tool… every softball he throws damages his credibility more than the tv exposure helps it.

  13. grandpoopah says: Mar 27, 2013 12:33 AM

    Teo played against NFL level competition once last year and was completely steamrolled on every play in that game. He would be a 5th rounder at best if he played for any team other than notre dame. Any NFL lineman will pancake him on every down. And god help him when he has to cover a good TE or a back like Forte or Rice coming out of the backfield. Whoever selects him, assuming it is before the 4th round, should be fired on the spot. And this has nothing to do with the fake girlfriend. It’s just that he is not good enough to excel at the pro level, and it is pretty freaking obvious if you just watch his tape. But just like Josh McDaniels traded up into the first round for the hard working but under talented Tim Tebow, some overpaid and overmatched nutsack GM will go and blow a pick on this practice squad fodder. I just hope it isn’t my nut sack GM, Howie Roseman.

  14. timegambit says: Mar 27, 2013 12:35 AM

    Fake?

    I once fell asleep listening to two men talking; they were both trying to get me to contribute to a channel I already had for free.

    But, seriously, he might be have a disability.

    All of my girlfriends have violently tossed my hand from down low to over my head during relations.

    You need contact.

  15. 2difshoe says: Mar 27, 2013 1:37 AM

    I wonder if the team that signs Manti, will provide an empty locker stall for his girlfriend?

  16. 90210g says: Mar 27, 2013 2:27 AM

    teo will hook up with ayanbadego since both of them are phags !
    one is pushing for legalizing gay marriages and the other stays away from chicks and has fake relationships with them!

  17. badintent says: Mar 27, 2013 2:37 AM

    Gruden should have had Keyshawn fined, suspend and sent to Iran for his BS. Can’t believe that NFL networks would hire that clown.MOST overrated WR in NFL history.

  18. kokomike says: Mar 27, 2013 4:19 AM

    He’ll probably go to the Ravens. Ray Lewis will mentor him. Ray will have his back. He’ll get ribbed for the catfishing thing until his first big hit. Then, they will call him MantiRay. The Ravens will probably win another Super Bowl or two. He’ll go to a few Pro Bowls. And, a lot of you holier than thou Notre Dame haters will go suck-a-fish.

  19. maddbearfan says: Mar 27, 2013 5:15 AM

    This clown is “drama queen”, he’s already surpassed anything Brett Farve could have done.

  20. onbucky96 says: Mar 27, 2013 5:17 AM

    So Chucky burns Cam Newton at the stake for percieved issues 2yrs ago but DOESN’T mention the fake girlfriend. Another ESPN fubar…

  21. jp4120 says: Mar 27, 2013 7:07 AM

    how can anyone care what that overpaid buttkisser Gruden has to say? so friggin boring.

  22. pksullivanmha says: Mar 27, 2013 7:21 AM

    Hope he’s on a mission to Buffalo. @footballadt52 🏈

  23. dutchhmaster says: Mar 27, 2013 7:28 AM

    The thing is, I don’t think this guy is mentally strong to laugh at himself and take all the jokes in stride. He will be out of the league in three to four years.

  24. Cereal says: Mar 27, 2013 7:40 AM

    I dont care about the whole fake girlfriend BS, I just dont think he’s going to be very good. He’s slow & can be pushed around

  25. ccjcsr says: Mar 27, 2013 7:51 AM

    Another LB that won’t pan out in the League

  26. autumnwind999 says: Mar 27, 2013 9:19 AM

    Kudos to Gruden for steering clear of this non-issue.

  27. autumnwind999 says: Mar 27, 2013 9:23 AM

    He’ll be a good player. Maybe not great, but good to very good.

    It’s funny because if he were like .15 seconds (about a full step) faster over 40 yards people would be talking him up as a top 15 pick.

  28. uptjeff says: Mar 27, 2013 10:39 AM

    I don’t trust people who have online girlfriends.

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