A little before 7 a.m. Monday, regardless of whether his team wins or loses without him Sunday at Kansas City, John Fox will walk into his expansive office at the Broncos headquarters and resume his job as head coach.

"The longest bye week in history," Fox said Friday during an interview with The Denver Post, his first since returning to Denver from three weeks of medical leave.

Then again, to learn what Fox has been doing, about the only change in his job description will be the venue. After open-heart surgery Nov. 4 to replace a faulty aortic valve, followed by four days to recover at a hospital, Fox was released to his home in Charlotte, N.C. Then he got to work.

"After that, I talked to a bunch of guys every day," Fox said. "People are talking about watching my hours. I'm like, I've been working 12-, 14-hour days sitting at home. It's not like I go out and run the plays. I draw them up. That's desk work. Sitting at my computer watching tape. The only difference is, I was at a desktop before and now I'm on an iPad."

On his team-secured iPad, Fox for the last three weeks has been watching the Broncos practice every day. He gets cut-up video of the team's games, practices and opponents.

Fox talked to the team's interim coach, Jack Del Rio, nearly every day. They talked ball. They talked about their wives, their kids and their health.

Fox spoke to his immediate boss, Broncos football operations director John Elway, every other day.

"Especially with personnel stuff, I would tell him what we're doing," Elway said. "Kept him up to speed with different things we might have done."

Fox talked to Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and to team president Joe Ellis. Fox talked to his position coaches, to executive assistant Kristi Nichols, to vice president of operations Chip Conway and to video director Steve Boxer.

Fox sent personal texts to each Denver player, talked with a bunch of them and communicated most frequently with his two primary captains, quarterback Peyton Manning and middle linebacker Wesley Woodyard.

"He's giving me tips and reminders, things that he thinks I need to work on and things that he thinks our offense needs to focus on," Manning said of Fox.

"Any head coach talks to the quarterback," Fox said of Manning. "That relationship is important. Plus, he's a special cat. Kind of a coach on the field, anyway. But I talked to a lot of guys.

"This is not a one-man show. It's an orchestra. Jack basically took over and would do the team meetings, he would do the leadership council meeting, he would do the staff meetings. But our system and schedules were already done, whether it was these four games in the third quarter (of the season) or the next four in the fourth quarter. It's a big operation."

For the Monday team meeting Nov. 18, Fox was Skyped into the large conference room at Dove Valley. Fox liked that. He was able to see his players. They were able to see and hear from him.