Ticats place defensive end J.R. Tavai on retired list, designate ratio-breaking right tackle Chris Van Zeyl as injured

Photo courtesy: Steven Chang/B.C. Lions

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats made a series of roster moves Thursday, including announcing the retirement of veteran American defensive lineman J.R. Tavai.

The 28-year-old signed with the Ticats in free agency after starting nine games for the B.C. Lions in 2021. He registered 15 defensive tackles, two tackles for loss, two quarterback sacks, one pass knockdown, and one forced fumble last season.

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

Joining him in retirement is receiver Marcus Green, who played in one game for the Ticats in 2021, recording three kickoff returns for 56 yards, seven punt returns for 70 yards and one missed field goal return for 15 yards.

The five-foot-eight, 191-pound native of New Albany, Mississippi was originally selected by the Atlanta Falcons in the sixth round, 203rd overall, in the 2019 NFL Draft and also spent time with the Philadelphia Eagles.

The team has made additional space on the training camp roster by placing ratio-breaking right tackle and former Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman Chris Van Zeyl and American defensive back Desmond Lawrence on the injured veteran list. Rookie American offensive linemen Tyler Johnson and Korren Kirven were also placed on the suspended list.

Hamilton signed a trio of players to fill the space, including defensive backs Will Allen and Traveon Beck and receiver Andrew Boston.

Allen played 38 games over four seasons at Columbia University from 2017 to 2021. The five-foot-nine, 180-pound native of Pembroke Pines, Florida registered 61 total tackles, four tackles for loss, 20 pass deflections, three interceptions and a Columbia football record with five blocked kicks (three extra-point attempts and two field goals). Allen also factored into the return game, tallying 37 kick returns for 1,026 yards and one kick-return touchdown.

Beck played 43 games over his four seasons at the University of California from 2016 to 2019. The five-foot-nine, 165-pound native of Paramount, California totalled 77 total tackles, four interceptions, 14 pass deflections and one forced fumble.

Boston played 45 games from 2018 to 2021 at Eastern Washington University. The six-foot-three, 200-pound native of Puyallup, Washington compiled 188 receptions, for 2,621 yards and 20 receiving touchdowns, while adding nine carries for 56 yards and one touchdown.