The NFL community just received some great news about Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin. According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Hamlin spoke to the Bills players for the first time since collapsing on the field and going into cardiac arrest during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday night. He was talking to the players on FaceTime after doctors removed his breathing tube. Rapoport also said that Hamlin delivered a message "to the entire group" after talking to various teammates.
The Bills confirmed what Rapoport reported, saying that Hamlin "FaceTimed into our team meeting today to talk to players and coaches." The Bills then revealed that Hamlin said "Love you boys," to the team as they get ready for their final game of the regular season. Hamlin's health has been progressing every day since Monday night. It's not clear how long he will be in the hospital, but the Bills are happy to see Hamlin awake and talking.
Damar Hamlin FaceTimed into our team meeting today to talk to players and coaches.— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) January 6, 2023
What he said to the team: “Love you boys.” ❤️ pic.twitter.com/8dorrWNaxt
When the Bills heard the news that Hamlin woke up on Thursday, saying they were excited would be a major understatement. "We heard that news this morning and there's nothing that could have been told to us to bring our day down," Bills quarterback Josh Allen said in a press conference on Thursday, per the team's official website. "We're extremely happy for him and his family. We just want to love up on him. The next chance we get, I don't know when it's going to be, hopefully if we get to see him anytime soon. It's going to be awesome."
And now that Hamlin is talking, the Bills have more than enough motivation to play well against the New England Patriots on Sunday which will be the final game of the regular season. "We want to go out there and play for 3, and he'll be a huge driving force and the emotion and the love of the game that we play with and for each other," Allen said.
Hamlin was selected by the Bills in the sixth round of the 2021 NFL Draft. He became a starter earlier this season after Micah Hyde went down with an injury. In 15 games with 13 starts this season, Hamlin recorded 91 tackles, six tackles for loss 1.5 sacks and two passes defended.