On Thursday, Swope was forced into early retirement after failing to bounce back from lingering concussion symptoms. Throughout his four seasons at Texas A&M, it’s believed that Swope suffered at least four separate concussions.
Despite being over half a year removed from his college football career, Swope was unable to participate in spring practices with the Cardinals. Head coach Bruce Arians admitted to being worried about his status heading into training camp, and must now watch his promising young receiver walk away from the game before ever even putting on pads at the NFL level.
As unfortunate as the loss is for the Cardinals and their passing game, Swope made the smart move for his long-term health. If he’s still suffering from lingering issues from concussions sustained in college, another blow from an NFL defender could put Swope on the permanently disabled list.
Still, Swope had a promising future with the Cardinals as a speedy receiver. The former Aggie got the attention of scouts after scorching a 4.34 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine. His history with concussions, though, led to his slide down the draft, where Arizona finally scooped him up in the sixth round with the 174th overall pick.
It was originally assumed that the Cardinals would stash Swope on the Injured Reserve list, effectively giving him a redshirt rookie season while waiting for full clearance from the Arizona medical staff. The worst-case scenario, however, has played out and now brings his career to an end.
It’s a shame to see Swope head for early retirement, but he made the right choice.