Broncos linebacker Alexander Johnson took the media a bit by surprise Wednesday when he revealed that defensive coordinator Ed Donatell spent time in the hospital last week fighting COVID-19.
Donatell tested positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 1 and has missed Denver's last three games. Coach Vic Fangio has taken over his duties since.
“Obviously, when your defensive coordinator is down and out of commission it’s tough," Johnson said. "I know he was in the hospital and stuff so I’m definitely sending my prayers up. We’re definitely missing him, just his morale and the energy that he has being at practice and always preaching on working on takeaways and stuff like that. So, definitely notice a difference not having him out here.”
On Friday, Fangio was asked about Donatell's health and how much the two have talked over the past couple of weeks.
“I’ve talked to Ed extensively. A couple times a day at least," Fangio said. "He’s getting better. He’s going through the protocols. He’s in our thoughts here all the time. I particularly probably miss him more than anybody because Ed and I have been together for 10 years — kind of conjoined at the hip there.
"I miss his friendship. I miss just having him around. He knows how I think, I know how he thinks. It’s been tough not having him here obviously as a coach. We miss his coaching ability, but I miss him personally more than anything else.”
Patrick addresses ejection
Wide receiver Tim Patrick addressed his ejection from Sunday's game against the Raiders when he punched Las Vegas' Isaiah Johnson.
Patrick was brief in his explanation of the situation.
“What happened? You've seen the video," Patrick said Wednesday. "You know the type of guy he is. It just didn’t play out in my favor. That’s it.”
Patrick didn't say anything else about the scuffle, but did talk about the potential of the Broncos, despite their 3-6 record and tough schedule ahead.
“You just keep working," Patrick said. "Just because you work one week, doesn’t mean it’s going to work that week. You have to keep to it. When that dam breaks, it’s going to be a good sight. At this time, we have to keep working, stick together and figure this thing out.”