“What We Just Witnessed Is Remarkable” | Bills Safety Damar Hamlin Returns To Bills Lineup Seven Months After Suffering Cardiac Arrest

Saturday night at Highmark Stadium wasn’t your ordinary run-of-the-mill preseason football game. The night was made memorable because Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin returned to the lineup just seven months after suffering cardiac arrest during a Jan. 2 game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The 25-year-old played 24 snaps, making three tackles, but also looking just as active as he did prior to that near-tragic night. 

For Hamlin just being alive is a blessing, but the former Pittsburgh Panthers star was intent on making his way to the gridiron. And, if Saturday’s return was my indication, the slithery ballhawk is here to stay. Of course, Hamlin’s offered a wide range of emotions for himself, players, coaches and fans, who all witnessed him fighting for his life on the turf of Paul Brown Stadium just about 225 days ago. 

Hamlin Speaks Modestly About Return

In an effort to downplay how big the moment was for himself, Hamlin spoke pretty candidly about his return. 

“It was fun, it was super fun, it was a great experience, just another milestone and a step up to just getting back to myself as far as the football space,” Hamlin said after the game. “Just chopping this tree down as much as I can, one step at a time.”

Hamlin sounds like someone who’s just happy to have the opportunity to do something again, when it was almost taken away from him. 

Bills Coach Had Much Stronger Views On Hamlin’s Return

While, Hamlin kept it pretty basic when describing how he felt in making his return to the field, Bills head coach Sean McDermott came with some real juice when he talked about it.

“What we just witnessed to me is remarkable,” McDermott said. “It really is. It’s a true sign of a young man’s courage and, obviously, everyone that helped him get to this point. I know there’s a football game going on out there today, but I mean, truly remarkable display of courage and strength and faith.

“Had a chance to communicate with Damar a bit last night, and he assured me he was ready to go and was going to trust in his preparation and God, and I think that shows a lot about who he is.” 

Hamlin’s road to recovery began in April when he was cleared to resume football activities. That was followed by his full participation in team drills during June minicamp. And since training camp began a little over two weeks ago he’s been a full participant.

Barring any setback he’ll be ready to go come the team’s season opener on Sept. 11 at the New York Jets on “Monday Night Football.”

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