Atlanta Falcons defensive coordinator Dean Pees was hospitalized after being involved in a collision before the team’s game against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
Pees was run into by a kick returner as the two teams warmed up for their Week 15 game, according to The Athletic. Pees reportedly bumped his first with Falcons safety Erik Harris as he was carted off the field.
“He was stable, alert and responsive and has been transported to University Medical Center New Orleans for medical testing,” the Falcons said in a statement. “Frank Bush will serve as interim defensive play caller for today’s game.”
Pees, 73, is in his second season as the Falcons’ defensive coordinator under head coach Arthur Smith. Pees came to Atlanta with Smith as the two were coaches with the Tennessee Titans.
Pees served as the Titans’ defensive coordinator from 2018-2019. He was also a defensive coordinator with the Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots at other points in his career.
The Falcons came into the game in need of a win to keep pace in the NFC South division race – as did the Saints.
Atlanta is 22nd in points allowed and 30th in yards allowed this season. Rashaan Evans led the Falcons with 134 tackles before Sunday’s game. Mykal Walker also had 101 tackles.