Manti Te’o, a former Notre Dame great and NFL linebacker, last played a down for the Chicago Bears in 2020. Te’o has since retired and made it clear he is done playing the game. As many remember, Te’o made headlines from an infamous catfish controversy and was later revealed by Notre Dame to be a hoax victim.
Fortunately for Te’o, he was able to clear his name through his Netflix documentary, Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist. The former second-round pick has since gotten married in 2020 and has a daughter who was born in 2021. Te’o has also found a new purpose and passion in his life, which is to help others.
Manti Te’o Has Moved on From Football and Is Working to Help Others
“I’m playing a different game now,” the Notre Dame legend told TMZ Sports. “I’m trying to empower people. Trying to inspire people. That’s the game that I’m playing now, and I’m trying to be the best at that.”
Te’o could still suit up and play football in the NFL or another league. However, his passion for helping others stems from his 2013 catfishing incident, as he hopes to help those going through hard times and tough situations just like he did. In 2022 he joined Transcend, a telehealth provider that helps assist athletes.
“If my life can be that for people — to show people that, ‘Hey, it may not be sunshine and roses all the time, but if you just keep your head down and keep working and believing in yourself and putting God first, everything will be all right.’”
Te’o had a storied career at Notre Dame. He was a five-star recruit and committed to the Fighting Irish in 2009. He played for the historic program from 2009-2012 and won several awards, such as the Dick Butkus Award and Maxwell Award.
Te’o was then drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft and carved out an eight-year playing career with the Chargers, New Orleans Saints, and Chicago Bears. However, he chose to hang up his cleats after the 2020 season, with his last game being a Wild Card matchup with Chicago.
Overall, fans of the game should be pleased to see where Te’o is ten years later. With his name and image cleared, Teo can focus on inspiring others, helping his community, and being the best possible husband and father.