SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 05: Josh Kennedy handballs during a Sydney Swans AFL pre-season training session at Lakeside Oval on December 5, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Swans defender Dane Rampe says teammate Josh Kennedy is the “perfect option” as new captain of the club.

Rampe admits that the playing group was taken by surprise by the captaincy change, however, says Kennedy will be a great leader in 2017.

Kieren Jack and Jarrad McVeigh had been co-captains of the club since 2013, before standing down in the off-season, with Kennedy announced as the stand alone skipper.

“Yeah it did, to be honest (take the group by surprise), but the time couldn’t be any better for ‘Joey’ (Kennedy) to come in,” Rampe said.

“Nothing against the other boys, they’ve led us magnificently, but he’s so well credentialed and so well respected, it just seemed like the perfect option.

“He’s the most consistent player I’ve ever played with, and I think first and foremost that’s what he’s got to worry about, but knowing his nature, he’s going to want to bite off as much as he can.

“As we keep telling him, we voted him in on the back of the things he’s done consistently in the six or seven years he’s been here, week in, week out.

“He’s been voicing his opinion a lot more since he’s taken on the role and we’re all better for it because his knowledge of the game is pretty impressive.”

Kennedy has played 170 games for the Swans since crossing from the Hawks at the end of the 2009 season. He was part of Sydney’s 2012 premiership side, has won three club best and fairest awards and is a three-time All-Australian.