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Former South Carolina great Pharoh Cooper announces NFL retirement

On3 imageby:Wes Mitchell06/10/24

Wes Mitchell

Former South Carolina football great Pharoh Cooper has announced his retirement from the NFL after seven years in the league.

“Farewell football, I’m officially retiring from the NFL,” Copper said on X/Twitter Monday. “I’m forever grateful and give all the glory to God that I was able to live out my childhood dream. I appreciate all the love and support I’ve received from my family, friends, and fans through out my career. Much love.”

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The Havelock, N.C. native wide receiver completes his NFL career with 61 receptions for 545 yards and a touchdown but was most productive as a punt and kick returner.

Cooper earned first-team AP All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors with the Los Angeles Rams in 2017 when he returned 32 punts for 399 yards plus 34 kickoffs for 932 yards and a touchdown. The 27.4 yards per return was tops in the NFL.

In his career, Cooper accumulated 3,018 kickoff return yards on 128 returns.

The 5-foot-11, 208-pounder’s best season as a receiver came in 2019 when he had 25 catches for 243 yards.

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After a three-year career at South Carolina, Cooper was selected by the Los Angeles Rams in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft.

Cooper would go on to also play for the Cardinals, Panthers, Bengals, and Giants. He did not play in 2023.

In his three years in Columbia, Cooper racked up 138 receptions for 2,163 yards and 18 touchdowns, most of which came in his final two seasons. A triple threat on offense, Cooper also rushed for 513 career yards and four touchdowns and completed nine career passes for four touchdowns.

Cooper’s 233 receiving yards against Tennessee in 2014 was a school record at the time.

A three-star prospect, Cooper signed with the Gamecocks out of Havelock High School in 2013. The recruiting industry considered him the No. 460 overall prospect and No. 49 wide receiver in the class. Rivals was highest on him, ranking him a four-star prospect.

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