Tavai spent five years at the University of Hawai’i before being selected by the Detroit Lions in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He established himself as a key defender for the Rainbow Warriors after taking a redshirt year in 2014 and went on to play in 47 games overall between his freshman and senior seasons. Tavai racked up 391 tackles, 17.5 sacks, two interceptions, three forced fumbles and recoveries, and a blocked punt along the way.
The Lions chose Tavai with the 43rd overall pick in the 2019 draft because of his college performance. Early on, he showed some promise, playing in 15 games as a rookie, but a shoulder injury in late December forced him to give up the season.
He came back the following year to add 16 more games to his record, but Detroit released him in 2021, and Tavai soon signed with the Patriots. He has made a total of 44 NFL appearances, recording two sacks, three forced fumbles, two recoveries, and an interception.
Tavai was essentially committed to a two-year contract when the Patriots moved him from their practice squad to the active roster in October of last year. He carries a $1.14 million salary cap charge in the second to last of those two seasons, which is 2022.
This amount is comprised of a $965,000 salary, a prorated $25,000 signing bonus, a $50,000 roster bonus, and a $100,000 likely-to-earn per-game bonus. The Patriots would save $1.12 million in total if they released him, with only his signing bonus guaranteed.
How Much Does Jahlani Tavai Make?
On average, Jahlani Tavai makes $929,443 per year. Tavai will earn a base salary of $965,000, a roster bonus of $180,000, and a workout bonus of $50,000 in 2022, with a $1,220,000 cap hit.