Living on the edge: Ticats sign veteran DL J.R. Tavai

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats have signed American free agent defensive end J.R. Tavai.

The 28-year-old started nine games for the B.C. Lions in 2021 and registered 15 defensive tackles, two tackles for loss, two quarterback sacks, one pass knockdown, and one forced fumble.

The six-foot-two, 269-pound native of Inglewood, Calif. has played 31 career CFL games over three seasons with B.C. (2021) and the Ottawa Redblacks (2018-19) totalling 84 tackles, 73 defensive tackles, 10 quarterback sacks, and five forced fumbles.

Tavai spent two seasons with the NFL’s Tennessee Titans (2015-16), playing four games and registering three tackles, one sack, and one forced fumble.

Prior to turning pro, he played 40 games over four seasons at the University of Southern California (2011-15) and registered 130 total tackles, 25 tackles for loss, 10.5 sacks, three pass knockdowns, thee forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery.