Mike Ditka Hospitalized After Suffering Heart Attack

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured Columnist

CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 10:  Former Chicago Bears head coach Mike Ditka walks the sidelines during the game between the Chicago Bears and the Atlanta Falcons at Soldier Field on September 10, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Kena Krutsinger/Getty Images)
Kena Krutsinger/Getty Images

Pro Football Hall of Famer Mike Ditka is recovering from a heart attack in a Florida hospital.

"Coach Ditka had a mild heart attack earlier this week. Doctors inserted a pacemaker, and he is doing much better," Ditka's longtime agent Steve Mandell said, according to ESPN. "He appreciates the outpouring of support and expects to be home soon."

WGN's Rick Tarsitano first reported Friday that Ditka suffered the heart attack earlier in the week.

Jarrett Payton—the son of former Chicago Bears running back Walter Payton and a WGN contributor—confirmed Ditka is in the hospital and "doing well."

Ditka, 79, enjoyed a decorated 12-year playing career as a tight end with the Chicago Bears, Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys that saw him capture five Pro Bowl berths, two All-Pro nods and a Super Bowl title.

He later took over as head coach of the Bears in 1982 and went 106-62 during his 11 seasons at the helm.

The highlight of his time in the Windy City came in 1985 when he led the Bears to a 15-1 record during a campaign that was punctuated by a Super Bowl 20 win over the New England Patriots.

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