comscore Detroit Lions pick former University of Hawaii linebacker Jahlani Tavai in NFL Draft | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Sports Breaking | Top News

Detroit Lions pick former University of Hawaii linebacker Jahlani Tavai in NFL Draft

  • CRAIG T. KOJIMA / Oct. 3, 2018

    Jahlani Tavai adjusts his helmet between drills during a University of Hawaii Warriors’ practice in October. The Detroit Lions selected Tavai today in the second round of the NFL Draft with the 43rd pick overall.

  • JAMM AQUINO / Oct. 6, 2018

    Hawaii linebacker Jahlani Tavai (31) works to bring down Wyoming running back Nico Evans (22) during the first half of an NCAA college football game on Oct. 6 at Aloha Stadium.

  • JAMM AQUINO / Oct. 20, 2018

    Hawaii linebacker Jahlani Tavai (31) pursues Nevada running back Toa Taua (35) during the first half of an NCAA football game on Oct. 20 at Aloha Stadium.

The Detroit Lions selected former University of Hawaii linebacker Jahlani Tavai in the second round of the NFL Draft today.

Tavai was the 43rd pick overall.

Tavai is the first Rainbow Warrior to be drafted since the New England Patriots picked running back Joey Iosefa in 2015. Tavai will be reunited with former UH offensive lineman Leo Koloamatangi, who is on the Lions’ roster.

Tavai, who is from Inglewood, Calif., had 82 tackles in an injury-shortened senior season in 2018. But he impressed scouts and personnel directors during meetings at the NFL Scouting Combine, UH’s pro day, and special workout. He also was invited for private workouts by four NFL teams, including the Lions.

Tavai had been told he was viewed as a second-day selection, but most projections had him going in the third round, at best.

But Tavai, who can play all the linebacker positions as well as rush end, proved to be too valuable for the Lions to allow to go past the second round.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature
Comments (24)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Scroll Up