John Fox: 'No doubt in my mind' I was close to death

Broncos coach John Fox returns to the Denver sideline Sunday against the Tennessee Titans after undergoing aortic heart valve replacement surgery that kept him out nearly a month.

In an exclusive interview with NFL Media's Michelle Beisner, Fox believed there was "no doubt" he was close to death with his heart issues. "It was a scary time," Fox said Sunday on NFL Network's "NFL Gameday Morning."


Thousands shared stories telling us why they love football in a contest to win a trip to Super Bowl XLVIII. We chose 10 finalists. Now you choose the winners.

Fox has known about his heart problem, which he described as a birth defect, since 1997. After experiencing tunnel vision and being on the brink of death, Fox admitted he made a "very poor medical decision" to hold off on open-heart surgery and to continue coaching the Broncos.

In Fox's absence, Broncos interim coach Jack Del Rio led Denver to a 3-1 record and a commanding lead in the AFC West.

Fox spoke with fellow Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano, whose wife said that it would be harder than anything to watch the Broncos games while recovering. The first game Fox could watch was "a blur" in the Broncos' 28-20 victory over the San Diego Chargers in Week 10.

Fox says he's in good shape, but he won't be bench-pressing 250 pounds anytime soon. The Broncos coach is down 15 pounds to his high school weight of 185. Although he admits he doesn't look quite as good as he did in high school.