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Get well Ray Rhodes


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Hope he can make a full recovery.


Holmgren, doctors to further limit Rhodes' duties

Associated Press

SEATTLE -- Seattle Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren and his good friend and defensive coordinator Ray Rhodes had already agreed to a reduced work load in September, after the 55-year-old Rhodes had a stroke.

"But he cheated," Holmgren said Wednesday.

So now, five days after Rhodes' second stroke-like episode in two months, Holmgren is going to Plan B.

"I'm going to go into his office every day at five o'clock and escort him to his car," Holmgren said.

He was smiling, but he apparently was not joking.

Holmgren, Rhodes and doctors have decided the former Philadelphia and Green Bay coach can no longer be on the practice field. And Rhodes will not be in the press box for Sunday's game against St. Louis. He had been upstairs for each of Seattle's last seven games.

The team has not definitively said Rhodes had another stroke Friday, for which he was hospitalized for a day, causing him to miss Seattle's win at Arizona. But Holmgren and doctors are obviously concerned Rhodes is not healthy enough to continue at his usual pace.

Linebackers coach John Marshall is now Seattle's full-time coordinator, after taking play-calling duties from Rhodes in September. Before Holmgren hired Marshall in 2003 from Detroit, Marshall was San Francisco's linebackers coach in 1994, when Rhodes was the 49ers' defensive coordinator.

Marshall also has been defensive coordinator for Atlanta (1983-85), San Francisco (1997-98) and Carolina (1999-2001).

Former defensive line coach Zerick Rollins, in his fifth year with the team, is now filling Marshall's role leading the Seahawks' young linebackers.

Those linebackers got a lot younger Wednesday, when Holmgren said ninth-year veteran Jamie Sharper was out indefinitely with an infected and swollen right knee. Rookie LeRoy Hill will start for Sharper.

And Rhodes will be watching Hill on television from his Seattle-area home.

"His hours will be strictly what they are. I'm not going to budge," Holmgren said. "Ray's still here. We'll still have his ideas and his strategies. It's just now his body won't let him do some of those other things."

Holmgren said Rhodes will continue to study film of opposing offenses and be in all the team's defensive strategy meetings.

"He'll do what he did before he got sick. But when he gets tired, he'll go home," Holmgren said.

Rhodes' second health scare followed St. Louis coach Mike Martz being hospitalized then sent home for the season last month with a heart virus.

Interim Rams coach Joe Vitt said Wednesday Martz continues to improve. Vitt said Martz now feels well enough to use an elliptical trainer for up to 90 minutes a day.

Vitt, in his 27th year as an NFL assistant, said since he took over for Martz four weeks ago, he has made a point of exercising each Friday and Saturday. He had already been on a doctor's regimen to reduce his cholesterol level.

"I have not felt the pressure, or the stress. I have a great support staff," Vitt said.

Holmgren, in his 14th year as NFL head coach, said the cases of his good friends Martz and now Rhodes have made him reassess how he lives during the grind of an NFL season, in which coaches often sleep on office couches and almost forget the routes back to their homes.

"It can be stressful," Holmgren said. "At the same time, each of us has to figure out how to handle it. It makes you think how you conduct your own life."

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Here is to you Ray, recover quickly

This brings up another point though..... the stress and riddiculous hours of NFL head coaches

Besides our beloved Steve Spurrier, these guys beat themselves up trying to win, and as Joe Gibbs could attest to in 1992, it really kills your body

Should the NFL mandate a maximum number of hours coaches can be at the practice facility per week and per bye week, for the sake of their health?

Sort of like there is a limit on offseason team activities, should there be one on coaches hours?

I just fear one of these days real soon one of these guys are just going to drop dead on the sideline

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