Buffalo Bills football player Tamar Hamlin was in critical condition at a Cincinnati hospital early Tuesday morning after suffering a heart attack during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals, the Bills said.
On Twitter, the Bills said Hamlin’s heart rate was restored While in the field he was transferred to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center for “further testing and treatment.” Hamlin was unconscious, the team said.
The University of Cincinnati Medical Center, the region’s only Level One trauma center, is the same facility that treated sacked Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa earlier this season after suffering a head and neck injury during a game against the Bengals.
Hamlin’s status was announced after the NFL suspended Monday night’s game between the Bills and Bengals.
Meanwhile, football fans from both teams gathered at the UC Medical Center early Tuesday morning to hold a vigil for Hamlin.
In a statement from the NFL, league commissioner Roger Goodell said: “Humlin received immediate medical attention on the field by team and independent medical staff and local paramedics. He was later transported to a local hospital in critical condition.”
“Our thoughts are with Tamar and the Buffalo Bills. We will provide more information as it becomes available,” The NFL said.
“The NFLPA and everyone in our community are praying for Tamar Hamlin,” NFL Players Association said in a statement. “We are in contact with the Bills and Bengals players, as well as the NFL. The only thing that matters at this time is Tamar’s health and well-being.”
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Hamlin, 24, collapsed in the first quarter after colliding with Bengals receiver Dee Higgins. After completing a tackle on Higgins, Hamlin stood up straight, took a step forward, paused and slumped backwards.
Bills players immediately signaled to the sidelines for help from their coaching staff. Hamlin was down for about 10 minutes before medical staff appeared to give Hamlin CPR before he was carted off the field.
Both teammates rallied around him. The Bills team gathered in group prayer as he was led away.
Tributes have poured in from NFL players — including the Bills quarterback Josh Allen “Please pray for our brother,” he tweeted. Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs was also seen in the hospital.
UC Hospital spokeswoman Amanda Nageleson told NPR she had no information about Hamlin or the care he was receiving. It is also not clear when hospital officials may inform the media.
No date has been announced for the resumption of play.
Hamlin is in his second year in the NFL after being drafted in the sixth round in 2021 out of the University of Pittsburgh.