Other than QB Johnny Manziel otherwise known as “Johnny Football” Texas a&M’s offense last season was all through WR Ryan Swope. At 6’1” 206lbs he has a bigger build than other slot receivers like Wes Welker, Brandon Stokley, and other guys in the NFL Draft like Tavon Austin and DeAndre Hopkins. Swope is also a finalist to become the cover boy of the new and upcoming NCAA Football 14 quite an achievement for Manziel and Tannehill’s sidekick.
He made a name for himself in 2010 as a sophomore playing with QB Jerrod Johnson who was a senior captain that year; they also entered the season with high expectations with players like WR Jeff Fuller and LB Von Miller. Swope caught 72 passes for 825 yards and 4TD, not too significant in terms of touchdowns but very reliable in terms of his hands and routes. He caught 55 of those 72 passes in the games they won. Not bad for a guy who as a freshman he was playing DB. You can say that the move to WR was a great career move.
As a junior with a new QB, in fact you may have heard of him, Ryan Tannehill who became the 8th overall pick of the Miami Dolphins. Swope quickly became the favorite wide receiver like how Andre Reed was for Jim Kelly. He finished the season with 89 catches for 1207 yards receiving and had 11TD. The improvement in his game showed on film/highlights and on the stat sheet. Another year, another QB, this past season he had little know Freshman (RS) QB Johnny Manziel. I saw the game vs. Florida and I noticed the double fake play action where they brought in the backfield. That’s similar to how Percy Harvin was used at Florida. Swope showed over the course of the season he could run block and very well. Overall he still had 72 catches 913 yards and 8TDs as a senior, not bad for a team that became a zone-read team.
His best games were against the Alabama teams (Alabama, Auburn). In A&M’s upset over the Crimson Tide he had a season high 11 catches 111 yards receiving and a TD. He was a matchup nightmare. After the upset there was a standing ovation for A&M by some Tide fans. That’s respect. As for Swope he was heavily targeted throughout. Against Auburn He scored 2TDs in 6 catches along with 140 yards. He showed in this game that he could be a threat all over the field not just in the slot. Granted Auburn struggled, 63 points for an offense in the SEC is quite impressive.
How do I characterize Ryan Swope? He is grit and balls and we all know what that can do, and in a league full of pre-Madonna guys like Randy Moss over the years, Swope could be a great contradiction of that. After all he runs a 4.34 40 yard dash, much better than anyone would’ve ever thought (all stereotypes aside).
Before the combine many would say 4th round pick AT BEST, but one of the few that think this guy is legit and the real deal. According to CBS Sports he’s at the 83rd pick of the Draft (mid 3rd round), to me he’s top 40 value. Swope has speed, acceleration, great hands, good routes, and most of all he can play on the outside as a z receiver, or as a slot.
Some comparisons include Jordan Shipley, Brandon Stokley and maybe Wes Welker not for me though. I see him as more of an Andre Reed type, where he’s not a big play guy but to compare him a HOF’er is a stretch but I will stand by that statement.
Minnesota made the playoffs last season thanks to Adrian Peterson and that defensive line. But they need to have a playmaker to compliment Harvin and Rudolph, unless they trade Harvin, but that’s unlikely with GM Spielman denying it at the moment, with those three guys, we will see for sure if Christian Ponder is a true starting QB in this league.
Kansas City has Alex Smith now and are likely to draft LT Luke Joeckel #1 overall, as for the rest of the offense Jonathan Baldwin and Steve Breaston are not solid receivers (#2’s). If Dwayne Bowe comes back they may still draft a WR for the other side, Alex Smith may need the help.
Carolina has an offense that at times looks like clockwork, at other times it’s all about Cam Newton, they need a better receiver than Steve Smith to compliment Brandon LaFell, Smith has always been one-dimensional in my eyes but Swope can add another dimension to put Smith in the slot at his age.
Swope could be the steal of the WR class the same way I felt about Ryan Broyles and Randall Cobb the last two years, except no size issues or injury concerns. He is fighting a stereotype that is more used than any other in America. I know he’ll succeed and pull through.
- White Receiver Ryan Swope Runs 4.34 40, Defies NFL.com’s Stereotypical Prospect Profiles (sportsgrid.com)
- WR Swope sending scouts back to tape (blogs.buffalobills.com)
- Ryan Swope: Combine Speedster One of NFL Draft’s Biggest Sleepers (bleacherreport.com)
- A&M’s Swope hopes he’s on Texans’ radar (chron.com)
- Draft Gems: Ryan Swope (buffalowdown.com)
- 2013 Draft Combine Update: Tavon Austin, Ryan Swope Post Impressive Numbers (thepewterplank.com)
- Texas A&M Football: Complete NFL Combine Results for Former Aggies (bleacherreport.com)
- NFL Combine Results 2013: Day 4 Highlights, Reaction and Recap (bleacherreport.com)
- Texas A&M WR Ryan Swope wouldn’t mind an Aggie reunion with Ryan Tannehill and Miami Dolphins (blogs.palmbeachpost.com)
- 2013 NFL Combine: Ryan Swope Sees Reunion with Tannehill as “Pretty Cool” (thephinsider.com)