MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Detroit Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley is back in his hometown and he made a stop at Mobile County Metro Jail. The standout on the football field, known for making big hits, is now taking one from the law.
The former Auburn Tiger and Williamson High School alum was booked just after 1 p.m. Wednesday for second degree possession of marijuana.
Tim Jones has known Fairley since they were kids. He was shocked to hear the news.
"A lot of young kids look up to him. He is a role model to some kids," said Jones.
It happened on Morningside Drive just around the corner from Fairley's mother's house. Police said a neighbor called about a suspicious white Cadillac Escalade.
Corporal Chris Levy with Mobile Police said Fairley was behind the wheel.
"There was a heavy smell of marijuana in the vehicle and police actually located a small amount of marijuana in the ashtray," said Levy.
Police said Eric Taylor was in the passenger seat. Taylor has been booked several times for drugs, assault and possession of a pistol without a permit.
Fairley was arrested back in 2009 for a noise ordinance violation. Tuesday was the first drug related charge for Fairley.
However, was not the first time the Detroit Lions have seen players arrested for possession.
Fairley is actually the third arrest this off-season.
Statement from the Detroit Lions on the arrest of Nick Fairley:
"We are aware of the incident involving Nick Fairley.
"We hold all of our players to a high standard of behavior and the recent charges against Nick and Mikel Leshoure are not consistent with those standards. We are extremely disappointed.
"We will continue to gather information and will have further comment at the appropriate time."
Jones said this doesn't change the way he thinks of Fairley, and it won't for anyone who knows him.
"Might mess up his career. You never know. I hope it doesn't, because he is a good football player and a good person. So, I hope he can make it through," said Jones.
Fairley was released on $1,000 bond from Mobile Metro Jail not long after his arrest.
Under the NFL's drug policy, Fairley could face up to a four game suspension without pay. As of Tuesday night, the league had not commented on the arrest.
Fairley decided to forego his last year of eligibility and entered the 2011 NFL Draft. He was selected 13th overall by the Detroit Lions.
Fairley also won the Lombardi Award, which is awarded annually to the best college football lineman or linebacker.
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