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Arizona Cardinals 2013 NFL Draft Class: Ryan Swope, WR

July 18th, 2013 at 6:04 AM
By Steve Smith

'University of Phoenix Stadium' photo (c) 2009, Dyanna Hyde - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/
Looking to add depth to their wide receiver corps, the Arizona Cardinals drafted wide receiver Ryan Swope of Texas A&M with the second of their sixth round picks (174th overall) in this year's NFL Draft. The 6-foot, 205-pound Swope has sure hands he has also had concussion issues in college.

That is a definite concern. Some experts had Swope rated as a third round talent but his concussion issues caused the rookie to slip significantly in the draft.

Training camp is just over a week away now. Let's take a look at his strengths and weaknesses via nfl.com:

Strengths Possesses a somewhat compact build from his running back days, with good thickness in the upper and lower bodies which translates to functional strength on the field. Very reliable receiver, his hands are strong enough and he has the flexibility to grab low, wide, and high passes away from his frame. Foot quickness and strong route knowledge allow him to separate on outs, crosses, and jerk routes from the slot. Slows down in passing windows and finds room in zones to maximize his quarterback's ability to find him. Often used on quick screens to take advantage of his ability to regularly sidestep would-be tacklers. Thrives on a broken play, separating vertically from trailing defensive backs. Gives excellent effort blocking downfield and near the line in the run game, using his strength and agility to mirror and sustain, showing aggressiveness when riding defenders well out of the play.

Weaknesses Does not play at his timed speed in terms of consistently running away from defensive backs. Doesn't have the elite athleticism on the field to elude NFL-caliber defenders in space, and his strength is not enough to run through pro linebackers and defensive backs in the second level.

NFL Comparison Jordan Shipley, Jacksonville Jaguars

Bottom Line After becoming a favorite target of Ryan Tannehill's at A&M due to his ability to take advantage of broken plays, Swope continued his trend as one of the Aggies' top receiving options in 2012. The former running back put up great numbers at the combine, including a 4.34 40-yard dash, but he does not consistently play at that speed. In fact, Swope's quick footwork when breaking off routes is his best asset.

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Tags: Arizona, Arizona Cardinals, Football, Jordan Shipley, NFL, Ryan Swope

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