According to the KJ, while he grew up in North Carolina, Patriots' defensive end Derek Rivers is originally from Augusta.  His family relocated to North Carolina when he was just a few months old, but he still has ties to the state.

His mother, Mary Leinonen, is an Augusta native and he still has several relatives living in Central Maine like Derek's aunt, Sandra Leinonen-Dunn, an art teacher at Chelsea Elementary School.  As a result, Rivers has made frequent trips to the state throughout his life.

Rivers attended Youngstown State and was a 3rd round draft pick for the New England Patriots in 2017.

His first season was rough.  He tore his ACL in a pre-season practice session and spent the entire season rehabbing.

This season went much better.  He saw action in six regular season games and in the AFC semifinal game versus the Chargers.

There's no guarantee that Rivers will play in tonight's game, but it could happen!

Additionally , Rivers and his wife Lauren are expecting their first child this Spring.  A baby boy who will be due on Derek's birthday - May 9th.

We wish him all the best and look forward to seeing him on the field.