Mike Tomlin appeared to hold back tears as he gave an emotional message of support to Damar Hamlin, who remains in critical condition at a Cincinnati area hospital.
The 24-year-old Bills safety collapsed after making a routine tackle on Tee Higgins, with paramedics immediately rushing onto the field. He would receive several minutes of CPR and the use of a defibrillator to restart his heart. Fans, players and coaches from around the NFL have sent messages of support to the Bills’ safety.
Head coach Mike Tomlin had his regularly scheduled news conference on Tuesday and could be seen getting emotional as he held back tears speaking about Hamlin.
“I’ll say this about Damar Hamlin: It’s a really personal thing to me, being a Pittsburgher and that young man being a Pittsburgher, I’ve known that guy probably since he was about 12. I’ve just got a lot of respect and love for him as a human being, his commitment to the pursuit of his goals and dreams of doing what he is right now, which is playing in the NFL.”
“To watch him make personal decisions, and make that a realization, it’s just an honor to get to know young people like that.”
“I’ve had an opportunity to express that to him whenever I see him. We’ve played Buffalo each of the last two seasons, and he and I had a moment because it’s just cool to not only appreciate these guys in terms of where they are now but to know them since they were younger people and to watch their maturation, their development, to watch them earn what they’ve been chasing, it’s really a cool thing, and he’s an example of that. I’ve got a lot of love for that young man.”
Tomlin has known Hamlin since he was a youth football player within the Pittsburgh area.
Mike Tomlin said that he reached out to Bills head coach Sean McDermott.
“I’ve lifted him and that organization up in prayer. I’ve reached out to Sean McDermott to lend whatever assistance I could. But I don’t have a lot to add other than that. I just respect the fact that you guys appreciate how personal it is for me, not only for me, but for all of us.”
The final week of regular season games, which will take place this weekend, seem irrelevant in the wake of Hamlin’s condition. Nobody is caring about playoff seeding or home-field advantage until this young man pulls through.
Continued thoughts and prayers to Damar Hamlin’s family.WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.