Antonio Smith says Manti Te’o would be the butt of every joke if he were to end up with the Houston Texans.
"Our locker room is full of clowns and, oh man, people would kill him," Smith said on NBC Sports Network's "Pro Football Talk." "I mean, he would be the butt of every joke for at least two, three years."
The incident involving Te’o and his fake girlfriend has already led NFL teams to probe more than usual about the prospect at the recent NFL Combine, and also prompted a joke with Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert who was asked if his girlfriend was real.
While many have argued that the controversy surrounding Te’o should have no effect on his draft stock, the mocking he will face in NFL locker rooms will not only erode teammates’ respect for their middle linebacker but could also have an effect on Te’o and his ability to perform at a high level.
I continue to believe that when it comes down to it, the truth behind Smith’s comments and the questions surrounding Te’o will make him slide even further than his weak performances in the BCS National Championship Game and the NFL Combine would otherwise cause him to fall.