Watch: Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin waves at fans from Bills locker room

The Buffalo Bills’ divisional-round playoff game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday was a special one for safety Damar Hamlin. Almost three weeks prior, Hamlin had suffered a cardiac arrest during the first quarter of the Bills’ Week 17 game against the Bengals, and his return to the field was an emotional moment for fans and teammates alike.

At the two-minute warning in the first half of the game, an image of Hamlin appeared on the screens at Highmark Stadium as snow fell to the ground. At first, it was tough to see who, or what, exactly was being shown, but a lower third graphic popped up with the words: “Damar Hamlin, Bills safety.”

As the image came into focus, Hamlin could be seen holding up his hands in the shape of a heart in what has become his signature move, pumping up the crowd as it cheered loudly upon seeing him despite the Bills’ on-field struggles.

“I thought it was a pretty cool moment,” coach Sean McDermott said after the season-ending 27-10 loss. “The game wasn’t trending the way we wanted it to. But when they put them on the big screen, and just a great moment, keep in perspective, of course on where he was just a few weeks ago. So super happy for him and thankful that his health is returning. And I know he’ll continue to take it one day at a time.”

Hamlin is Back!

Hamlin returned to a Bills game for the first time with his family, including mom Nina, father Mario, and brother Damir, taking in the loss from a luxury box at Highmark.

Before the game, Hamlin also visited with his teammates in the locker room. He did not come onto the field. “Just his presence I think speaks volumes,” center Mitch Morse said.

“He’s not a big rah-rah guy and I’m sure that at some point he’s a little bit exhausted of people asking how he’s doing or put in a position that he didn’t ask to be put in. His presence alone, his smile, and his positive energy, which he’s always had, always interject energy and good vibes with the group. It was really good to see him. I’m really happy for the fans, the crowd, for him to be able to go out there and he’s worked very hard to get in the position he’s at right now.”

Despite the Bills’ season-ending, having Hamlin in the building and with the team went a long way, players said. “Just his presence was a warm feeling and obviously we wanted to play for him and continue our mission,” quarterback Josh Allen said. “And again, we just ran into a team that played better than us tonight.” It was a special moment for everyone involved and shows the unbreakable bond between the team, its fans, and the community.



Leave a Comment