In the eight years since he was first drafted, Swan has made incredible improvement to the point where he became the 2011 Brownlow Medalist, and earned the label of ‘untaggable’ from many commentators. A strongly built midfielder who is dangerous if released to half forward, Swan’s unique ability to repeatedly out-sprint his opponents, allowing him to power from contest to contest, has made him Collingwood’s most consistent player of the past eight seasons. Criticised by some for his occasionally errant kicking, Swan’s disposal is now considered to be as good as any other.
Polling thirty-four votes was at that time a record under the 1,2,3 counting system. Nick Dal Santo (St Kilda) came second with 28 votes while Scott Pendlebury (Collingwood) and Matthew Boyd (Western Bulldogs) came equal third with 24 votes.