Buffalo Bills offensive tackle Dion Dawkins has recalled the moment he realized something was “really, really wrong” when teammate Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Hamlin is hospitalized and in critical condition after suffering cardiac arrest in Monday’s game. His uncle, Dorian Glenn, told CNN that Hamlin was still resuscitated twice — on the field and again in the hospital.
The game was later adjourned with players from both teams standing by as a distraction.
Dawkins told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Tuesday, “You look around and you see the medical staff doing their job, and you know when it’s something minor like someone is down, but they’re sitting People are moving along at a good pace.” ,
“But when things like this are going on, they’re waving really fast and calling people on the field and calling elite medical staff – that’s when you really realize something is really wrong.” .
“It was one of the first experiences for me where something like this has happened where it silenced an entire stadium that was rowdy for the first half of the game.”
Live Updates: NFL star Damar Hamlin in critical condition after cardiac arrest
According to Glenn, Hamlin is on a ventilator to relieve some of the strain on his lungs, which have been damaged after cardiac arrest. He added that his nephew’s condition is “going upwards in a positive way” while being treated at the hospital.
For Dawkins, who is in his sixth season with the Bills, the gravity of the situation immediately made him turn to prayer.
“Whether you’re a believer or not, only a higher power can really know what’s next,” he said.
“Our people helped and that higher power also helped. But in that moment you just have to be sensitive and let the prayer rise up and work its magic.
On Tuesday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the game between the Bills and Bengals would not resume this week, adding that no decision had been made on when it could be played.
Dawkins said, “I’m really blessed that we didn’t have to continue playing.”
He added, “The fact that we didn’t have to go back and play on that field shows that there is care, and all we can ask is that we be treated as people.”
“Most people regard us as athletes, as superstars and some as celebrities, but at that moment they [the NFL] Treated us like people. And to be treated as a person who is being taken care of is a beautiful feeling.
“I’m grateful that I was treated as a person and so were the rest of my teammates because at the end of the day, we are people. And we have feelings, we have feelings, we cry, we hurt. And we have families, and they hurt, and they cry.