With Jonathan Goff having recently visited the Miami Dolphins and no signs that Chase Blackburn is a lock to return, the New York Giants appear to be in the market for a linebacker. Ideally, their focus would be on a middle linebacker, but rumors began to spread late Tuesday night that their target may be Cincinnati Bengals outside linebacker Keith Rivers.
Although Rivers has primarily played OLB in Cincinnati, Drew Boylhart's 2007 scouting report touched on the possibility of Rivers playing MLB on a 4-3 defense that runs a lot of cover 2 – ala, the New York Giants.
Initially dismissed as nothing more than an internet rumor, Mike Garafolo of The Star-Ledger hinted Wednesday morning that there may be some substance to this.
"Sit tight. Might be some fire behind that smoke," Garafolo tweeted.
Rivers was drafted in the first-round (9th overall) of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. He received one vote for 2008 Defensive Rookie of the Year, but lost out to New England Patriots LB Jerod Mayo.
Perhaps most well-known for being on the receiving end of a brutal blind-side hit that resulted in a broken jaw courtesy of then Pittsburgh Steelers WR Hines Ward, Rivers actually possesses quite a bit of high-end potential. Unfortunately for the former USC Trojan, injuries have plagued his entire career. In addition to his broken jaw and a previous foot injury, Rivers missed the entire 2011 season with a wrist injury.
In 35 career games, Rivers has collected 186 tackles, two sacks, two interceptions and nine stuffs.
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