“We’re excited to have another talented player in the mix for our defensive staff to work with,” general manager Jerry Reese said on the team's website today. “We try to create competition at every position, and Keith will definitely bring some competition to our linebacker group.”
The Giants will be getting Rivers, the ninth-overall selection in the 2008 NFL Draft, for a bargain it seems. As per Mike Garafolo of the Star-Ledger:
According to someone informed of the logistics of the deal, the team restructured the linebacker's deal. The person, who requested anonymity because the financials weren't to be discussed, did not provide specifics.Rivers is expected to compete immediately for a spot on the Giants' starting defense. The consensus is that Rivers will play the SAM linebacker in the base defense with Michael Boley moving to the middle and either Mathias Kiwanuka or Jacquian Williams at the WILL position.
Rivers was owed $2.16 million in base salary this upcoming season. As the Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy noted, Rivers' cap number for this season was $3.855 million, though the Bengals are responsible for the prorated money.
“This is an excellent opportunity for him to have a fresh start,” Coach Tom Coughlin said “Keith is versatile enough to play the outside on first and second down and he can play on third down because he runs well. And he’s fast enough to rush the passer.”
Rivers' pro career thus far has been by interrupted by injuries and he has been working diligently to get himself in shape to resume his career.
“Last year was very frustrating,” Rivers said. “The more and more you sit and watch, going through the games and getting that feeling you get before a game and not being able to go out there and play football really hurts. But it’s all behind me and I’m excited about this new opportunity....I’m excited to get a fresh start and brand new beginning. You can’t ask for more than to be playing for the defending world champions and be in New York.”
And we're interested to see if Reese's latest wager will pay off.