The Broncos have announced that head coach John Fox will undergo aortic heart valve surgery on Tuesday. The long-time play-caller was taken to a North Carolina hospital on Saturday after he felt light-headed while golfing. The problem is a preexisting condition that he planned to take care of after the season. Due to the surgery, Fox is expected to miss several weeks. He could be gone from the team for up to four to six weeks, according to Fox Sports' Jay Glazer.
Fox was initially supposed to undergo the procedure in the offseason but ended up not receiving treatment. He met with a specialist in February to discuss the surgery.
The Broncos released the following statement on Saturday night:
"Denver Broncos Head Coach John Fox will undergo an aortic heart valve replacement early next week at a Charlotte-area hospital. He will take a leave of absence from coaching for at least the next several weeks.
"Our focus at this time is Coach Fox's health and well-being. We extend our thoughts and well-wishes to him for a full and speedy recovery.
"Coach Fox was advised by doctors months ago that his defective aortic valve would require this procedure following the 2013 season. As part of his trip to North Carolina over the bye week, he had a preoperative appointment on Thursday with his doctor, who informed him to seek medical attention immediately if he felt any discomfort.
"On Saturday, Coach Fox began feeling light-headed while golfing with friends. He was taken to a hospital, where testing revealed he needed to have this procedure as soon as possible.
"The club will announce its interim head coach as soon as that decision is finalized."
The Broncos are currently on a bye in Week 9 and an assistant coach is expected to be named interim head coach in Fox's absence. Denver defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio is a former head coach and is the most likely to receive the interim title.