NEW YORK -- Manti Te'o looked down at his phone Friday night and saw a call from a San Diego area code. He'd been waiting to hear from an NFL team for a day, but he didn't suspect the call was coming from the city's NFL team.
"I thought it was one of my friends calling me," Te'o said, according to U-T San Diego.
It was the San Diego Chargers telling Te'o they were trading up in the second round to take him with the No. 38 overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. Te'o's long and winding road to the NFL finally was complete.
Te'o admitted he expected to be selected in Thursday's first round. He said it "definitely put a huge fire under my butt to be better.
"All it did was give me more motivation to get better."
Te'o now begins the next chapter of his career. It starts in the Chargers, an ideal team for a player who wouldn't mind a low-key transition to NFL life.
Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.