Buffalo Bills Safety Damar Hamlin is showing “signs of improvement” but remains in critical condition in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during Monday’s NFL game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Bills issued an update on his condition in a brief statement Wednesday after Hamlin’s uncle Dorrian Glenn revealed the player had to be resuscitated twice after colliding with Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins.
“Damar remains in the ICU in a critical condition, with signs of improvement noted yesterday and overnight,” Bills wrote.
“He is expected to remain in intensive care as his health care team continues to monitor and treat him.”
Speaking to CNN outside the Cincinnati Medical Center where Hamlin is being treated, Glenn said: “His heart went out so they had to resuscitate him twice.
“They resuscitated him on the pitch before they brought him to the hospital and then resuscitated him a second time when they brought him to the hospital.
“I’m not a screamer, but I’ve never cried so much in my life. Only to know that my nephew basically died on the field and they brought him back to life.
“They put him to sleep just to give him a better chance to continue healing. We just take it day by day. It seems to be trending upwards in a positive way.”
Hamlin was said to be on a ventilator when sedated to help him breathe.
The Bills players and staff were seen praying together on the field as an ambulance took Hamlin to the hospital.
His teammates received a standing ovation from fans, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell soon announced that the game had been postponed after the incident.
An NFL update confirmed that the game would not be completed this week, but added that the Bills’ clash with the New England Patriots on Sunday is still scheduled.
The statement said: “After speaking with both teams and NFLPA (NFL Players Association) management, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell informed clubs today that Bills-Bengals play will not resume this week.
“The NFL has made no decision regarding whether or not to resume play at a later date. The league made no changes to the schedule for week 18 of the regular season.
There was an outburst of emotion across the United States in response to the incident, with fans gathering outside the University of Cincinnati Medical Center to hold a candlelight vigil for Hamlin.
His family in a statement expressed “sincere gratitude for the love and support shown to Damar during this difficult time”, adding: “We are deeply touched by the prayers, kind words and donations from fans across the country.”
The incident sparked an astonishing surge in support for Hamlin’s charity campaign two years ago to buy toys for children in need.
Donations to the Chasing M’s Foundation Community Toy Drive topped $6.4m (£5.38m) on Wednesday night in the UK.