(buffalobills.com ) Buffalo N.Y.- It was the news Jim Kelly was hoping for following surgery to remove part of his jaw that was stricken with cancer.

 Buffalo Bills.com is reporting that last week on a follow-up visit to the physicians that performed his surgery , Kelly was told he was cancer free and for now would avoid chemotherapy.

@Kelly had the left side of his jaw removed in surgery earlier this month along with all the teeth on the left side of his mouth in addition to several in front. To replace what was removed Kelly had a skin graft performed where tissue was harvested from his left leg to be used in his mouth.

Big time relief," he said. "Trust me, prayers definitely have a big part in it. I’ve received so many letters and emails from people that have had similar circumstances as I did and some of them were not very good and some of them were very good. You’re encouraged on one hand and discouraged on the other. To find out where they’ve been and the prognosis of where I’m going I’m very excited. I’m happy.

"I never thought I’d be saying cancer. I never though the ‘C’ word would become part of my vocabulary. But it is what has happened to me and the ups and downs of my life. I’m already on the way back up."

He’s hopeful that it a year’s time he’s back to normal. Kelly has lost 14 pounds purely based on his restrictions with food intake as he can only eat soft foods. The former QB says he’s like to lose another 10 to 15.

Kelly was also quick to thank all of his supporters that sent prayers and well wishes for a positive outcome and speedy recovery.