Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin had his heartbeat restored on the field after suffering cardiac arrest during the team’s game Monday night against the Cincinnati Bengals and is currently in critical care at a Cincinnati hospital, according to an official team statement issued on Tuesday morning.
Hamlin, 24, collapsed following his tackle of Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins and was administered CPR for multiple minutes, receiving oxygen as he was placed in the ambulance and taken off the field.
Hamlin was driven to the nearby University of Cincinnati Medical Center, and according to the team, is currently sedated and listed in critical condition.
“Our thoughts are with Damar and the Buffalo Bills. We will provide more information as it becomes available,” the NFL said in a statement issued Monday night. “The NFL has been in constant communication with the NFL Players Association which is in agreement with postponing the game.”
“What was most important was that it wasn’t about proceeding with the game,” NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent said during the conference call, according to ESPN’s Alaina Getzenberg. “Frankly, that aspect never crossed my mind or their mind internally. We asked that [referee] Shawn [Smith] communicate with both Taylor and Coach McDermott getting the players together. Frankly, it was just about getting a pulse of where they were at that particular time.”
“Emotions you can imagine in both locker rooms, and I commend both of those coaches,” Vincent said. “Tough situation to go back in and look at 53 men in the locker room and not that they asked but just to try and calm people down. It was obvious on the phone with them that the emotions were extremely high. It was a very volatile situation, and I thought the coaches, they led tonight. They led their locker rooms.”
“The NFLPA and everyone in our community is praying for Damar Hamlin,” the union said in a statement. “We have been in touch with Bills and Bengals players, and with the NFL. The only thing that matters at this moment is Damar’s health and well being.”