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Kiper: 'No way' Te'o falls to the Ravens in draft

Manti Te'o becoming a Baltimore Raven? Probably not going to happen, at least according to ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper.

The Ravens have a need for an inside linebacker and are expected to have interest in Te'o if he's available when they're on the clock with their first pick in the NFL draft, but Kiper said Wednesday that, in his opinion, there's "no way" Te'o will still be around when Baltimore picks at No. 32 in the first round.

"I thought Te'o could possibly be there," Kiper said during a national conference call. "I wanted to get him to 32, but there's just no way. You have too many teams that could take Manti Te'o. You think about the Giants at 19, the Bears at 20, the Vikings at both 23 or 25, so I don't think Te'o's going to be there unfortunately for the Ravens."

Te'o is one of the more heavily scrutinized players in this year's draft - with concerns stemming from the well-publicized girlfriend hoax to Te'o's lack of ideal athleticism for a three-down inside linebacker. But, despite the issues, Te'o was a two-time All-American at Notre Dame and Kiper said he could see Te'o becoming a Chris Spielman-type player at the NFL level.

Spielman played 10 seasons in the NFL and was a four-time Pro Bowl selection.

But, even if it's not Te'o, Kiper said he expects Baltimore to select an inside linebacker during the first few rounds of the draft.

But who?

As far as the first round, Georgia's Alec Ogletree and LSU's Kevin Minter have both been mentioned as possible players of interest for the Ravens, but, like with Te'o, Kiper said he doesn't expect Ogletree or Minter to still be available when Baltimore finally picks at No. 32.

If Minter is still available, however, Kiper said "he would be a nice pick at 32."

Minter ran the 40-yard dash in 4.81 seconds at the NFL Scouting Combine in February - a subpar time for an inside linebacker - but he earns high praise for his prowess against the run and is coming off a junior season at LSU that he posted 130 tackles, 15 tackles for a loss, four sacks and an interception.

Said Kiper of Minter: He had a great year for the Bayou Bengals."

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