Former 49ers defensive end Fred Dean, a key to their dynastic run in the 1980s and a Pro Football Hall of Famer, is on a ventilator after being infected with the coronavirus, according to former San Francisco teammate Dwight Hicks.
In a private Facebook post Thursday evening, Hicks shared that Dean, 68, is hospitalized in intensive care.
“I just learned that my 49er teammate Fred Dean was taken to the hospital and is on a ventilator in intensive care,” Hicks’ post read. “I’m sending healing light to Fred, Pam his wife, and his family. I trust that you all are (taking) this virus seriously. Be well and stay safe.”
Jesse Sapolu, their former 49ers teammate, and former Raiders running back Kenny King both commented on Hicks’ post that they were praying for Dean’s recovery.
Hicks did not specify where or how long Dean has been hospitalized.
Dean won Super Bowls XVI and XIX with the Niners after arriving from San Diego in a trade early in the 1981 season. He finished his first season in San Francisco as a Super Bowl champion and an All-Pro selection.
In 1983, Dean was again named an All-Pro before capturing his second Super Bowl with the 49ers after the 1984 season. He retired after the 1985 season and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2008.
For most of his career, the NFL did not compile sack statistics, but Dean racked up 17.5 sacks in 1983, good for second in the league that year.
Dean was part of a fearsome 49ers defense featured Ronnie Lott, Hacksaw Reynolds and Eric Wright in addition to Dean and Hicks. The 1981 defense was second in the NFL in fewest points and yards allowed, while the 1984 team gave up the fewest points to opponents.
Reporter Rick Hurd contributed to this story.