NCAA Football

Bills’ Damar Hamlin has on-field cardiac arrest: Safety ‘improved significantly’ in last 24 hours

Bills’ Damar Hamlin has on-field cardiac arrest: Safety ‘improved significantly’ in last 24 hours

A scary and emotional scene unfolded early in Monday night’s game between Bills and of Bengal. Bills safety with 5:58 left in first quarter Damar Hamlin collapsed seconds after being picked off by the Bengals wide receiver Or Higgins. He received emergency medical treatment on the field and was taken to the University of California, Cincinnati Medical Center. Hamlin, 24, went into cardiac arrest after the hit and his heartbeat resumed on the field, the Bills announced in a statement early Tuesday morning.

Hamlin remains in critical condition, but he has made positive strides. Bills on Thursday released an update from the doctors treating Hamlin at the University of California Medical Center, saying he has shown “great improvement over the last 24 hours” and “shows that he appears to be neurologically intact.” His lungs continue to heal and make steady progress.

Buffalo does plan to practice for the first time Thursday since Monday night’s incident.

CBS Sports NFL Insider Jonathan Jones also confirmed that Mario Hamlin, Damar’s father, reached out to the team Wednesday night to relay positive information about his son.

The terrible event caused a shock not only in the world of sports, but also in the whole world. US President Joe Biden even spoke with Hamlin’s mother and father this week, via Bloomberg News.

Keeping up with the latest update from the Bills was a statement from Hamlin’s agency, 1 Sports, thanking those who sent him well wishes.

The support for Damar across the country has been amazing. Thanks for the calls, messages and emails. Damar improved significantly overnight. We are very grateful to all the first responders, doctors and hospital staff, and everyone who played a part in this process.

Please continue to pray for Damar and we will provide updates as they come.

The NFL officially postponed the Monday Night Football game between Buffalo and Cincinnati shortly after 10:00 PM ET. It is currently unclear whether or not the NFL plans to resume this game between the two clubs. Week 18 is expected to go according to schedule.

Hamlin received CPR on the field for several minutes as he was placed on a stretcher and eventually into an ambulance. He was given oxygen as he entered the ambulance, which took him and some family members to the hospital.

On Tuesday morning, family spokesman Jordan Rooney said of Hamlin: “I can’t speak specifically about his health. All I will say is that he is struggling. He is a fighter… The family is in good spirits. I honestly just take it minute by minute, hour by hour. … The most important thing is to give the family their privacy … His family is going through a lot right now.”

The Hamlin family is betrayed next press release late Tuesday morning:

“On behalf of our family, we would like to express our sincere gratitude for the love and support shown to Damar during this difficult time. We are deeply touched by the prayers, kind words and donations from fans across the country.

“We also want to thank the dedicated EMS and medical staff at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center who provided exceptional care to Damar. We feel so blessed to be a part of the Buffalo Bills organization and have their support. We also want to thank Coach Taylor and the Bengals for everything they did.

“Your generosity and compassion mean everything to us. Please pray for Damar. We’ll release updates as they become available.”

Monday’s game was temporarily suspended after coaches Sean McDermott of the Bills and Zach Taylor of the Bengals took to the field. About an hour later, the NFL decided to postpone the game. He chose not to address the potential rescheduling of the game in a conversation with the media late Monday night. That decision will ultimately rest in the hands of Commissioner Roger Goodell.

The Bills decided to fly back to Buffalo early Tuesday morning. Many members of the Bills and Bengals party visited the hospital late Monday night.

The Bills released the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

Damar Hamlin spent last night in intensive care and remains in critical condition today at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.

We are thankful and grateful for the support we have received thus far.

Around 11:30 pm ET on Monday, Hamlin’s agent, Ira Turner, made a statement to NFL media: “Please continue to pray for Damar and his family. We have no updates at this time. Please keep the family in your prayers.”

Hamlin is in the middle of his second season with the Bills. He earned a spot in Buffalo’s starting lineup this season after appearing in 14 games as a rookie. Hamlin played collegiately at Pittsburgh, where he tallied 276 tackles and six interceptions.

Hamlin’s character and work ethic led to him making the Bills’ 53-man roster as a rookie despite being a Day 3 draft pick. That same work ethic helped him become a starter this season.

“Damar has done a great job,” Bills general manager Brandon Beane said of Hamlin during his rookie training camp. “He’s a very instinctive player. … He’s a great kid, he wants it, he works hard and gives himself every chance to be in the mix despite being a sixth-round pick.”

Bengals owner Mike Brown released a statement expressing support and commenting on how everyone at the stadium handled the “unprecedented” and scary scene.

Hamlin’s injury sparked an outpouring of emotion and support across the sports world. Everyone NFL team expressed their thoughts through social networks. A host of players also expressed their support for Hamlin and his Buffalo teammates.

CBS Sports will provide more information on Hamlin as it becomes available.

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