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The NFL Announced Bills-Bengals Will Not Be Resumed This Week

The Bills and Bengals met on Monday night in what was supposed to be the game of the week in the NFL, but after Bills defensive back Damar Hamlin collapsed, going into cardiac arrest after making a tackle in the first quarter and needing CPR on the field, the game was ultimately postponed due to the emotional toll on players on both sides.

At that point, football became secondary to the health of Hamlin, who remains sedated and in critical condition at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center as of Tuesday afternoon when his family released its first statement. The Bills flew back to Buffalo (with some players staying back to be with Damar), indicating there would not be a quick resumption of play. On Tuesday the league confirmed the game will not be resumed this week, with no determination on whether it would be continued at a later date or cancelled completely.

The NFL also noted that there are no changes to the Week 18 schedule as of now, with the playoffs set to begin on Saturday Jan. 14. The need for time off between games means rescheduling games is nearly impossible, and the league will have to eventually make a decision on whether to adjust the playoff schedule or cancel the game outright. As the NFL’s statement notes, that all is of far less importance than Hamlin’s health and one would expect the league to hold off on scheduling decisions as long as possible in hopes that there will be a positive update on Hamlin’s condition on the horizon.

The league also sent a longer memo to teams that provided the option for additional mental health resources and counseling as players around the NFL try to deal with the terrifying visual of seeing a player collapse and go into cardiac arrest on the field.