JR Tavai-Ottawa RedBlacks-24july2019: Photo Scott Grant

(Vancouver)- The BC Lions Football Club has re-signed DL J.R. Tavai (A) for the 2021 season. Tavai was eligible to become a free agent in February.

“I can’t wait to play with the Lions and I’m really excited to reunite with both Rick Campbell and our defensive line coach Leroy Blugh,” said Tavai from his home in Redondo Beach, California.

“We are building a solid group of defensive linemen that will help us compete for a Grey Cup.”

Tavai (6’2, 269 lbs)- Enters his third CFL season and first with the Lions after originally joining the squad as a free agent in February 2020. The native of Inglewood, California previously suited up in 22 games over two seasons with the Ottawa REDBLACKS and recorded a team-high seven sacks in 2019 to go along with 49 defensive tackles and three forced fumbles.

Tavai moved north after spending parts of 2015 and 2016 with the Tennessee Titans where he appeared in four games and recorded three tackles, one sack and a forced fumble.

He was a member of the USC Trojans from 2011-14 and registered 130 total tackles and 10.5 sacks in his NCAA career. Tavai was also named a Pac-12 honourable mention in 2013.

Lions also add has added QB Gage Gubrud (A) and LB Jake Carlock (A) to the 2021 roster.

Gubrud (6’2, 204 lbs, pronounced goo-brood)- Set multiple career and single-season records in four years at Eastern Washington. Gubrud completed 753 passes for 9,984 yards- including a Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) single-season record 5,160 yards in 2016-, and 87 touchdowns in 32 contests. Shared Big Sky Conference MVP with teammate Cooper Kupp in 2016 and was also a two-time nominee for the Walter Payton Award given annually to the top offensive player in FCS. He transferred to Washington State University in 2019 and appeared in two contests.

Carlock (6’2, 238 lbs)- Attended 2019 training camp with the New York Giants where he returned an interception for a touchdown in pre-season action against the New York Jets. He was then assigned to the Giants practice squad until his release in October of that year. Carlock transferred from Stony Brook University to Long Island for his final two years of college. He led the Pioneers in combined tackles in both of his seasons while also recording six interceptions and four sacks in 21 games.