Mika Tafua is coming off an outstanding 2021 season where he posted 48 total tackles, 13 for a loss, and 9.5 sacks. Tafua’s excellent season helped him claim the Pac-12 Morris Trophy in addition to earning All-Conference honors. Tafua finished his Utah career with 130 tackles, 32 for a loss, and 17.5 sacks in four years.
Tafua is a strong defensive lineman that can play the edge and some inside. He is quick and explodes off the ball, allowing him to get to his pass rush moves quickly. With a stellar arsenal of pass rush techniques, he uses cross-chop and swims moves. In addition, the defensive lineman has shown the ability to rush the passer with his hand in the dirt and a two-point stance.
The former Utah defensive lineman has a high motor and does not quit on plays. Sometimes Tafua can drop in coverage, which shows in his nine total passes defended during his time at Utah.
Tafua will most likely be drafted in the third or fourth round. He could be a strong-side defensive end in a 4-3 scheme. Also, Tafua could add more muscle and be an outstanding 3-4 five-technique. With Tafua’s high motor and willingness to work hard, he could develop into an exceptional NFL defensive lineman. With the right team and coaching staff, Tafua could have a chance to be a contributor early on.