DAN BICKLEY

Bills S Damar Hamlin collapse is latest of NFL’s frightening moments

Jan 2, 2023, 8:40 PM | Updated: Jan 3, 2023, 8:16 am

The NFL is a horrifying place. That became abundantly clear on Monday night, when paramedics frantically performed CPR on the Bills’ Damar Hamlin, who absorbed a vicious hit to the chest while attempting to make a tackle.

Hamlin stood up, and immediately collapsed. And so began one of the most nauseating, stunning, sobering viewing experiences in recent memory, the worst ending imaginable to a weekend full of breathtaking, high-stakes football.

Hamlin’s status was not clear as he left the field in an ambulance. But those who watched it all unfold will never forget the anguish on the Buffalo sideline, the looks on the faces of his teammates and brothers.

It was the nightmare the modern-day NFL has long dreaded, the fear of a player dying on the field, from the legalized violence the sport encourages and demands.

Hamlin was in critical condition approximately an hour after the incident, the NFL said in a statement.

It’s been a rough year. Concussion protocol is under fire, fueled by the surreal visuals of Tua Tagovailoa convulsing on the field, his fingers locking up in trauma response. Over the weekend, Giants defenseman Kayvon Thibodeaux made snow angels on the field, right next to a writhing Nick Foles, the player Thibodeaux had just injured.

The NFL doesn’t want this. It tries hard to protect its quarterbacks, and yet 64 of them have started games this season alone. It spends big money on research and development for safer working conditions and has practically legislated dangerous kickoff returns out of the game.

But as we’ve seen far too often this season, it cannot control the escalating violence inside a sport that keeps getting bigger, stronger and faster.

Reach Bickley at dbickley@arizonasports.com. Listen to Bickley & Marotta weekdays from 6 – 10 a.m. on Arizona Sports.

Dan Bickley

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Why we should not discount the possibility of the Phoenix Suns getting LeBron James & Bronny James

Dan Bickley explains why we should not discount the possibility of the Phoenix Suns getting LeBron James & Bronny James.

12 hours ago

LeBron and Bronny James chat...

Dan Bickley

Could Phoenix Suns fans truly embrace LeBron, Bronny James?

Do you want to win your first championship courtesy of LeBron James? It’s a relevant question with reports the Suns plan to work out Bronny.

4 days ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Bickley Blast: How Arizona Diamondbacks can get ahead by sweeping the Miami Marlins

After sweeping the Dodgers in Los Angeles, Dan Bickley explains how the Arizona Diamondbacks can get ahead this weekend with a sweep of the Miami Marlins.

5 days ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Bickley Blast: Is Diamondbacks OF Corbin Carroll finally breaking out of his sophomore slump?

After Corbin Carroll's triple aided the Arizona Diamondbacks enroute to a 6-0 shutout and series win over the Dodgers in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Dan Bickley wonders if the outfielder could be breaking out of his early season slump.

6 days ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Bickley Blast: Happiness needs to be key offseason get for Phoenix Suns

Dan Bickley didn't see much joy or happiness out of this year's Phoenix Suns, so he'd like to see the team do a better job of engaging with their fanbase and each other come next season.

7 days ago

Devin Booker...

Dan Bickley

It’s on Devin Booker to shift Suns’ course, compete with NBA’s next generation

Devin Booker needs to change course and focus. He needs to play at an MVP level to help the Suns compete with the NBA's next generation.

7 days ago

Bills S Damar Hamlin collapse is latest of NFL’s frightening moments