INDIANAPOLIS -- At 2:30 p.m. ET, an unprecedented swarm of reporters rushed a podium in the media center here at the NFL scouting combine to hear from Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o. About 90 minutes later, the player considered the top prospect at Te'o's position stood at the same podium and spoke to a fraction of that crowd.
Georgia's Alec Ogletree is a former safety with sideline-to-sideline speed who, in the estimation of Kevin Weidl of Scouts Inc., would be a top-15 pick based purely on his skill set. That's about as high as an NFL team will draft a middle linebacker, but Ogletree's long list of character issues could push him further in the draft -- and put him in play for the Chicago Bears (No. 20), Minnesota Vikings (No. 23) or Green Bay Packers (No. 26).
Ogletree, who measured 6-foot-3 and 242 pounds here, was arrested earlier this month for DUI. He also was suspended four games last season for failing a drug test. Ogletree said he feels "really bad about the situation" and said he will spend his time at the scouting combine "just being a good person and trying to get [teams] to get to know who I really am and not what they read about me."
Taken together, a drug suspension and a DUI within the course of one year is a pretty significant red flag. It only takes one team to look past it for Ogletree to be a top-15 draft choice, but the guess is that he will slip. With three teams potentially in the market at his position, we will want to track his status.
"I feel bad about it," he said. "Whatever happens, I'll just have to move forward and take whatever I get."