Damar Hamlin's Status For Bills' 'Monday Night Football' Opener Determined

By Jason Hall

September 11, 2023

Buffalo Bills v Chicago Bears
Photo: Getty Images

Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin is reportedly expected to be inactive for the team's Monday Night Football season opening matchup against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium, sources with knowledge of the situation confirmed to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo.

Hamlin, who suffered cardiac arrest during a since-canceled Monday Night Football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in January, will reportedly be a healthy inactive in Week 1 due to "a numbers crunch in the defensive backfield," but "could be back on the playing field for Buffalo in the coming weeks," according to Garafolo.

Hamlin had previously made his official return to football practice during an OTA session on June 6 and participated in full pads during training camp. Bills general manager Brandon Beane confirmed that Hamlin was cleared to resume full activity in April.

"He's seen three additional specialists, most recently on Friday and they're all in agreement, it's not two to one or three to one or anything like that. They're all in lockstep of what this was and that he is cleared, resume full activities just like anyone else who was coming back from an injury or whatever so he's fully cleared, he's here and he is of the mindset, he's in a great headspace to come back and make his return," Beane said at the time.

Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest during the first quarter of the Bills' since-canceled Monday Night Football game against the Bengals on January 2. A stretcher and ambulance came onto the field and CPR was administered by first responders.

Hamlin was hospitalized at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and initially reported to be in critical condition before making a miraculous recovery, which coincided with an outpouring of support from players, coaches and fans. A GoFundMe page initially launched by Hamlin's Chasing M's Foundation to support a toy drive prior to his medical situation -- and later to support his recovery after far exceeding its $2,500 goal -- raised more than $9 million.

The Pittsburgh native was released from UC Medical Center one week after suffering cardiac arrest and discharged from Buffalo General Medical Center/Gates Vascular Institute after completing a series of tests and evaluations two days later.

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