Broncos coach John Fox to have heart procedure, will miss up to two months

Frank Schwab

The Denver Broncos will be without head coach John Fox for an extended period, perhaps for the rest of the regular season.

Fox Sports' Jay Glazer reported Saturday night that Fox will have a procedure on his aortic valve Tuesday. Fox fell ill on the golf course Saturday near Charlotte and was hospitalized. The Broncos are on a bye this week.

Glazer said Fox will remain in North Carolina for two weeks after surgery, and will miss from four-to-six weeks. The Denver Post reported Fox is out a minimum of two weeks, and as long as two months. The Broncos' season finale is Dec. 29, so the procedure and recovery could keep Fox off the sideline the rest of the regular season. Both Glazer and Mike Klis of the Denver Post said defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio, formerly the head coach in Jacksonville, is the likely choice as interim coach.

Fox, who is 58, told Glazer that he didn't have a heart attack, but this was a procedure he knew he needed eventually.

"Fox was slated to have this procedure in the offseason but held off," Glazer wrote. "Ironically, he flew to North Carolina during this weeks bye to meet (with) surgeon about a February procedure."

The Broncos are 7-1 and one of the favorites to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. Being without their coach for perhaps the entire second half of the season is a challenge the team didn't expect to face.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!