Hall of Famer Jim Kelly had cancerous cells removed from his jaw last June. (Rob Kim/Getty Images)
Hall of Famer Jim Kelly's oral cancer has returned, and he will have surgery on Thursday in New York City, according to a report from ESPN.com. Tweets from his wife Jill say that the cancer that is "aggressive" and "starting to spread."
The cancer was found March 14 when Kelly made a follow-up visit to the doctor for tests after he had cancerous cells surgically removed last June.
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With news of the return of the cancer, colleagues of Kelly expressed their support for the 54-year-old. Among them was Hall of Fame quarterback and current General Manager and Executive Vice President of Football Operations for the Denver Broncos John Elway, who said "there's not a stronger or tougher guy to handle this battle."
Tragedy has struck the Kelly family before; his son, Hunter, died at eight years old in 2005 from Krabbe disease, a hereditary genetic disorder which he was born with.
The Hall of Famer played for the Buffalo Bills beginning in 1986 and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2002, holding virtually every one of the Bills' passing records.SANCHEZ: Maurice Jones-Drew could wait until late-summer to choose new team