Jim Kelly never has been accused of being delicate.
Kelly's health, however, is fragile enough that a fever delayed his cancer treatments until next week.
Five days after Kelly learned surgery wasn't a current option to treat the cancer spreading inside his head, today's scheduled start for chemotherapy was postponed.
Doctors decided to push back Kelly's treatments because the legendary Buffalo Bills quarterback's temperature was up, and he needed an antibiotic.
"He's had a couple setbacks," his brother, Dan Kelly, told me tonight. "It's always this or that. We have to make sure Jim doesn't get sick leading into this."
Dan Kelly said Jim is now "locked and loaded" for treatments to begin next Monday at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan. Dan Kelly added the accelerated regimen of intense radiation and chemotherapy will last seven weeks.
"They have his pain pretty much under control," Dan Kelly said, "and that's been hurting all of us, just seeing him in so much pain.
"They have some of the best pain-management doctors here I've ever seen. Jim is comfortable now, and that's the most important thing."
Dan Kelly, when asked what else he felt compelled to share about how Jim was feeling tonight, emphasized gratitude for all of the messages and kind words their family has received.
"Jim's just so humbled by the outpouring of support from everybody throughout the world," Dan Kelly said. "He doesn't understand it, but he appreciates all the prayers because it's going to take a combination of prayers and medicine to get him through this.
"It's not going to be a simple battle."
Story topics: Jim Kelly