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Damar Hamlin thanks fans for support in his first social media posts since collapse

An artist's portrait of Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin is displayed Thursday outside UC Medical Center, where the 24-year-old remains hospitalized.
Joshua A. Bickel
/
AP
An artist's portrait of Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin is displayed Thursday outside UC Medical Center, where the 24-year-old remains hospitalized.

Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin, who suffered a cardiac arrest during a Monday night game, is now breathing on his own and talking with his family and team, the Bills said Friday. He also communicated with his teammates and coaches via video.

Physicians at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, where the 24-year-old is being treated, said Hamlin's breathing tube was removed overnight and he continues to progress "remarkably," the team reported.

"His neurologic function remains intact and he has been able to talk to his family and care team," the Bills said.

UCMC shared the Bills update on Twitter, adding, "Continued wonderful progress for #DamarHamlin!"

The Bills added that Hamlin spoke to his teammates and coaches through FaceTime Friday morning, saying, "Love you boys."

Hamlin's heart stopped beating following what seemed like a routine tackle during Monday's game against the Cincinnati Bengals. First responders resuscitated him by performing CPR and using a defibrillator. UCMC physicians praised the first responders' quick actions as life-saving.

The NFL said it will not reschedule the Bills-Bengals game, which was stopped in the first quarter after Hamlin collapsed. The league said in a news release Thursday that the game cancellation will have "no effect" on which clubs will qualify for the postseason.

"This has been a very difficult week," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said. "We continue to focus on the recovery of Damar Hamlin and are encouraged by the improvements in his condition as well as the tremendous outpouring of support and care for Damar and his family from across the country."
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Ashley Ahn
Ashley Ahn is an intern for the Digital News and Graphics desks. She previously covered the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines for CNN's health and medical unit and the trial of Ahmaud Arbery's killers for CNN's Atlanta News Bureau. She also wrote pieces for USA TODAY and served as the Executive Editor of her college's student newspaper, The Daily Pennsylvanian. Recently graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, Ahn is pursuing a master's degree in computer science at Columbia University.