Maa Tanuvasa (born November 6, 1970 in American Samoa) is a former American football defensive end, mainly for the Denver Broncos. He played nine years in the National Football League, winning two Super Bowl championships as a main component of the Broncos defense.
High school and college years
Tanuvasa was an Interscholatic All-Star in football
and track and field
at Mililani High School
in Mililani, Hawai'i
. He then moved on to the University of Hawaii
, where he starred for three years, amassing 190 tackles
and 10 sacks
and helping Hawaii to the 1992 Western Athletic Conference
He was drafted in the eighth round by the Los Angeles Rams
in the 1993 NFL Draft
and spent his rookie
year with them. In 1994, he was cut by the Rams and spent a part of the season on the Pittsburgh Steelers
' practice squad
His first National Football League season was with the Broncos in 1995, when he played one game. He worked his way into the rotation by the 1996 season, and by 1998, was a regular starter. He led the Broncos in sacks in the 1998 and 1999 seasons. He was on the Bronco teams which won the 1997 and 1998 championships.
After the 2000 season with the Broncos, he joined the San Diego Chargers for one year, and the Atlanta Falcons for the next. He has not been in the NFL since, having returned to his native Hawai'i.
He was inducted into the Hawai'i Sports Hall of Fame in 2006