If Riker was trying to keep a low profile because of his support of Pressman during the Pegasus
mutiny, he did a crappy job of it. He rose from ensign to commander in, what, 7 or 8 years? That's a meteoric rise that was sure to get attention. Maybe Pressman had something to so with his climb to the top, maybe just to get Riker sent off into the wilderness and far away from him. But apparently Riker just wouldn't take a ship!