ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- **As the Broncos prepared for their key division road game at San Diego, Interim Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio said that the team got 'great news' on Friday in the form of Head Coach John Fox being released from the Charlotte hospital at which he had been staying while recovering from heart valve replacement surgery.
"Great news today," Del Rio said during his press conference. "Coach Fox was released out of the hospital. I know that he's excited to get out (and) is one step closer to getting back with us."
Fox, who underwent the surgery procedure on Monday, stated in a release on Friday that he has deeply appreciated the outpouring of support that he has received throughout the process.
"The encouragement I've received from Robin and my family, friends, the Denver Broncos, fans and so many around the NFL has been incredible," Fox said in the statement. "I am truly thankful for every single thought and prayer that was directed my way."
His players were also quick to express their encouragement.
"Man, that's extremely good," linebacker Wesley Woodyard wrote in his weekly blog. "We didn't think he was going to get out this early. We're glad he's recovering and healthy, man. Foxy's a soldier. He's going to be a tough guy to keep out of anything. We're glad to hear that he's doing well."
Rookie running back Montee Ball also expressed his excitement about Fox's release in his weekly blog.
"The great news is that we heard he's doing really well," Ball wrote. "I'm very happy for him and for his family. That's a great thing. I've most definitely been praying for him."
Although he was uncertain about the extent of Fox's limitations now that he has been released, Del Rio noted that being released marked an important first step for the Coach.
"I really don't know a lot about all of that other than, obviously, he went through quite a bit and he's on the road to recovery," Del Rio said. "The first step is getting out of that hospital. I know that's a big one for him and I'm sure he's happy to be at home resting and recovering. He'll join us as soon he can."
Fox noted that he is feeling better each day.
"My recovery is progressing well," Fox said in the statement. "I am feeling better and getting stronger each day I will begin the next phase of my recovery in Charlotte and continue outpatient appointments with doctors, who will clear me to return to Denver when the time is right."
"Although I'm eager to return to coaching, my No. 1 focus is my health," he added. "I believe in our players and have full confidence in Jack Del Rio and our staff."
Del Rio noted that the two coaches will remain in consistent communication while Fox is away.
"Oh, sure," Del Rio said. "Yeah, we'll talk I would think almost on a daily basis from here on out."
Ultimately, Fox's release marked a piece of uplifting news for the team – which, as Del Rio noted, will continue to do its part in staying focused on preparing for the Chargers and the second half of the season.
"We kind of know that's what it is, he's dealing with it and he's got great people looking after him," Del Rio said. "We're really just staying on point doing our part – and that is preparing for this ballgame and preparing to play our best football as we go forward here. Knowing that, look, we had a good first half – it was a very good first half – but there are things we can do better and we're going to need to do better. That's really where all of our focus is right now."