If the Bears want to look linebacker in the first round, and they don't want to consider Manti Te'o, LSU's Kevin Minter may be another guy in the mix. He and Te'o are somewhat dueling 1-and-2 at the linebacker position, but Minter looks like a good player in his own right.
MORE: Mocking the Mocks - Kevin Minter
Minter's strengths are his reliable tackling and his anticipation and instincts, but he's not as much of a hitter as some teams may like. In coverage, he can match up pretty well with receivers out of the backfield and has decent enough lateral movement, though he can be beaten with speed and relies on his angles and vision to make plays. He's not very physical, but instead prefers to beat blockers with his agility as opposed to his strength.
CBS currently has him ranked as the 34th-best prospect and top linebacker - Dane Brugler has him going at 27 to the Texans. Prior to the Super Bowl, Mel Kiper had Minter moving to Baltimore to replace Ray Lewis for the Ravens at the 29th pick; WalterFootball's Charlie Campbell has those same Ravens grabbing Minter at 32. Of course, NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah has him coming to the Bears at 20 - so it's not as if nabbing Minter is completely out of the realm of possibility.
Not to mention of course Dane having a new LSU player to fawn over-- I mean um what now?
Does Minter strike your fancy as a middle linebacking prospect? Would you take him with the 20th pick?