CINCINNATI — Cincinnati Bengals receiver Tee Higgins said he's “in a good place right now” after hearing from Damar Hamlin's mother about his improvement on Thursday.
Higgins was involved in the hit that came right before the Buffalo Bills safety went into cardiac arrest on the field during the game Monday night. Doctors say Hamlin has made “remarkable improvement" in the last 24 hours.
“Obviously it’s been hard, just because you know I had something to do with the play (and) whatnot," Higgins said in his first public comments since Hamlin collapsed and the game was suspended. But "everyone has been making me feel whole again. I talked to his mom and everything is OK, he’s doing good, so I’m in a good place right now.”
Higgins said Hamlin's mother told him “she's thinking of me and praying for me and things like that.
“And suddenly she's telling me that he's OK. And just all the positive stuff,” the third-year wideout said. “I mean it feels good just knowing that he's OK, he's doing better, and it makes me feel better inside."
Higgins said it took him a beat or two after the play on Monday night to notice something was seriously wrong. Replays showed Hamlin stand up after tackling Higgins and a few seconds later fall straight backward.
“Me being a football player, I’m thinking he just flopped, one of my guys bumped him,” Higgins said. “I just seen the fall. I looked again, and I seen what happened, and I just turned my head and trying not to think about it. So I knew it was something crazy and something tragic.”
Medical personnel got Hamlin's heart started again with CPR and defibrillation. An ambulance rolled onto the field, and he was rushed to University of Cincinnati Medical Center.
“You know, it was hard (to see),” Higgins said. “Obviously, (I) wasn’t in a good place to play the rest of that game, so I’m kind of glad that we chose not to play.”