Player preview and 2008 NFL rookie preview for Keith Rivers, a Linebacker out of Southern California and the #9 selection of all the NFL Football picks in the 2008 nfl draft class to the Cincinnati Bengals.
Number 9 Pick: Cincinnati Bengals – Keith Rivers (LB, USC)
Keith Rivers, a 6’3, 225lbs outside linebacker has excellent speed and extremely athletic. Many experts see Rivers with a future as a pro bowl player. Rivers, out of USC has a great build and is very mobile.
At USC Rivers suffered some injury problems with left ankle surgery coming during his senior season. The injury appeared to hurt his range and mobility, but he still played in 11 of 12 games that season for the Trojans. During his entire USC career Rivers started 35 of 49 games, finishing with 240 tackles(139 solo) 5.5 sacks, 3 quarterback pressures, and two interceptions, adding 7 pass deflections, and causing 5 fumbles.
Keith played his high school football at Lake Mary High School in Florida. During his senior season he was named on the first team for USA Today, Parade Magazine, Super Prep, Prep Star, EA Sports, and Insiders.com. He was also a member of the Super Prep Elite 50, and was named the Florida Player of the Year, and Florida 6A Mr. Football runner up as a linebacker. During his senior season Rivers recorded 111 tackles, 2 sacks and 2 interceptions.
The knock on Rivers in college was when he was matched up against bigger lineman he has the tendency to get beat at the point of attack. Look for the Bengals to fix that problem as soon as possible. Rivers is a hard worker, and seemingly will stay out of trouble which is already a couple plus’ in the Bengals book!
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