Cam Gordon had just been cut by the Kansas City Chiefs and was “team hopping” in the National Football League when he found his second calling. The former University of Michigan and New England Patriots linebacker is enlisting with the Michigan State Police. “I came to the realization that I just wasn’t performing the way that I once was,” said Gordon, 25, a Detroit native and Inkster High School graduate whose bruising football career included three stress fractures in his back, a knee injury and multiple concussions. “So I said, ‘What is another career that will allow me to have an impact, have influence on younger kids and also leave behind a positive legacy?’ Instantly, state trooper — law enforcement — jumped into my mind.” State police last week extended a conditional job offer to Gordon that would make him an official member of the next trooper recruiting school. Gordon fills multiple needs for his new team, which is seeking young talent as hundreds of state police become eligible to retire in the next three years. As an African-American, he also complements the department’s efforts to boost diversity in what remains a predominately white police force. “I’ve heard it’s tough,” said Gordon, who signed with the Patriots in 2014 as an undrafted free agent. “I don’t want to go in there thinking, ‘Oh, man, I played pro. This is going to be easy.’ I don’t want to take it lightly.” Gordon, whose older brother works for the Detroit Police Department, said he always has looked up to law enforcement officers and wants to help improve any negative perceptions that may exist. “I feel like I can be the difference and have a positive impact,” he said.