- Jamison Hensley, ESPN Staff Writer
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There are rumors going around that the Bengals may be trading former first-round pick Keith Rivers to the New York Giants. The Newark Star-Ledger's Mike Garafolo addressed the rumblings by reporting "there might be some fire behind this smoke."
The Bengals would probably like to move Rivers, a projected backup linebacker who is making $2.16 million this year. But one holdup to this speculated move is Rivers' ability to pass a physical to complete any trade. Rivers missed all of last season with a wrist injury. The Cincinnati Enquirer referred to the injury as degenerative, but a source later told the paper that the injury is neither degenerative nor career threatening.
Given his injury history, Cincinnati probably wouldn't get anything more than a late-round pick for Rivers, the ninth overall pick in the 2008 draft. The Bengals already have moved on from him, signing Thomas Howard last year to replace him. Howard was the team's most consistent linebacker last season and led the Bengals with 99 tackles.