“You’ve won the game of life”

Caris Grell, Staff Reporter

No player in the NFL has ever been administered CPR on the field, until Damar Hamlin.

Hamlin plays as a safety for the Buffalo Bills football team. On January 2nd, during their game against the Cincinnati Bengals, he went into cardiac arrest following a tackle he made in the first quarter of the game. He stood up for a few seconds after the play ended before falling to the ground, unconscious. The Buffalo Bill’s medical team rushed to his side, and assistant trainer Denny Kellington began administering CPR. Hamlin received CPR on the field for 16 minutes before being driven in an ambulance to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center. The game between the Bengals and Bills was soon cancelled, and when Hamlin arrived at the hospital, he was sedated and in critical condition for several days. 

The Buffalo Bills team joined on the field to say a prayer for Damar Hamlin. Source: Fox News

 When Hamlin woke up from being sedated, he had one question. He asked in writing, “Did we win?” Dr. Timothy Pritts and Dr. William Knight, Hamlin’s doctors said, “Yes, Damar, you won. You’ve won the game of life. “The impact that Damar Hamlin had on the world was tremendous, and the entire NFL showed their support as Hamlin was going through recovery.

Yes, Damar, you won. You’ve won the game of life.

— Dr. Timothy Pritts and Dr. William Knight

#PrayforDamar and #BiggerThanFootball became popular across several social media sites. Before the game between the Jaguars and Titans on January 7th, both teams joined together on the field, took a knee, and prayed in honor of Damar Hamlin. Many other teams honored Hamlin, whether it was on the field or during a press conference.

Damar Hamlin showing his support for his team, the Buffalo Bills, from the hospital. Source: Buffalo Bills Instagram. 


Damar Hamlin returned to Buffalo after a week at the UC Medical Center, and his doctors stated that he was neurologically intact and making a steady recovery. Medical Emergencies like this are rare in the NFL, but they will never be forgotten.