Buffalo Bills defensive end Mario Williams graduated from the Lone Star College Law Enforcement Academy in Houston on Friday.
"He is now a licensed peace officer in the state of Texas," said Larry Stewart, one of Williams' instructors at Lone Star College, in an interview with FOX 26 Sports.
"That means he can be a police officer anywhere in the state of Texas."
Williams said since before he left college at North Carolina State he has had a passion for law enforcement and now he is a member of that fraternity.
"To say that I graduated from the Lone Star Law Enforcement Academy, it's an honor," Williams said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports. "It isn't something necessarily that I'm going to act on at this point.
"I'm still playing football. Football is my first love, but everybody has to have a plan B.
"It's something that I'm definitely going to fall back on after football is done, which hopefully is years and years down the road, but it's there. It's something that can't be taken away. I'm setting up myself for the future and I think that's the most important thing."
Williams passed his final exam on Friday, enabling him to graduate from the Lone Star Law Enforcement Academy.
"It was definitely like getting four sacks in a game and scooping and scoring a touchdown," Williams said.
"I was extremely excited. It was almost one of those things where you're so excited, you're smiling, you get that lump in your throat, you can't breathe.
"I've been studying like crazy. Staying up late at night. With everything else that's going on, you got to fit it in. To be able to handle that load just speaks volumes."
Williams, the Texans' first overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, had to complete a state-mandated 643 hours of class work.
According to Stewart, with the Help of Lone Star and its instructors, Williams was able to take a program that lasts five to six months and complete it in a little over three months.
"I was more excited for him than he was because I saw what he did in the classroom and I saw the time that he put in," Stewart said.
And Williams admits his excitement over passing his final test almost got the best of him.
"I hugged the proctor and I don't hug too many people," Williams said. "I guess I could say it was emotional, but I didn't cry, of course.
"It was a weight lifted off of my shoulders. All of this hard work and everybody helping, including Mr. Stewart here, finally to say I did it, it's always going to be with me."
After going through the course at Lone Star Williams said he has even greater respect for the men and women who work in law enforcement.
"Tremendous amount of respect, Williams said. "You see the things that they do out there serving and protecting, but you don't see what it took to get there. Having to read lawyers' lingo and a book that's like that thick, it's pretty tough."
Stewart said it did not take him long to discover Williams' passion for law enforcement.
"During the second week of class, in the classroom, I asked the question, 'who would see themselves as a law enforcement officer in 20 years' and he was the only one that raised his hand," Stewart said.
Williams said he did a lot of research on police academies and Lone Star was the only that he felt would work for him.
Stewart said Willliams' decision to go through his school's program means a great deal to the university.
"We have 85,000 students in our system and this shows, with Mario coming to our academy, it shows those 85,000 students if this guy has a passion for something that he's not even willing to do right now, if you just study, stick to your plan, stay focused, you can succeed too," Stewart said.