“Life is not what you can take; It’s what you can give.”

Tahir is a retired NFL Linebacker who grew up in Newark, with a dream of becoming a New Jersey State Trooper — with a diversion via a football career that began at Temple University and handed off to a decade in the NFL.

In 2012, Tahir was a 5th round draft pick for the Detroit Lions, the team that intentionally bookended his NFL career. After his first stint with the Lions, Tahir played for the Carolina Panthers, Arizona Cardinals and Oakland Raiders, always striving to make a difference — on and off the field — by promoting teamwork and community. In 2022, he signed a one-day contract with the Detroit Lions to officially retire with the team that gave him his big start. He came out of retirement in 2023 to play with the Lions once more and top it all off.

Tahir is all about never forgetting from where you came, and he is now splitting his time volunteering for inner city youth in his hometowns of Newark and Detroit.

“Life is not what you can take,” he says. “It’s what you can give.”

In 2014, Tahir established an annual K-12 football camp in Newark, “giving back to the city that raised me.” “A lot of people who I hold near and dear to my life I met through playing football, which kept me out of trouble growing up.”

His life experiences have shaped many other community service initiatives, too. While playing in Detroit, he developed “deep, rooted relationships” with the Downtown Boxing Gym, where he volunteered as a mentor with the youth program.

Raised by a single mom, with a younger brother who plays pro basketball for the Brooklyn Nets, Tahir knows how influential being part of any team/community can be: In 2019, the Raiders recognized his continued community service efforts as a Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year candidate, which validates his “commitment to philanthropy and community impact, as well as his excellence on the field.”