[Editor’s note: This article has been updated to correct the location of the Hall of Fame as Canton, Ohio.]
Hamlin went into cardiac arrest and collapsed on the field after making a tackle during a Monday game in Cincinnati. He remains in critical condition in an intensive care unit in Cincinnati, though he has showed “signs of improvement” since Tuesday, the Bills organization said on Twitter.
“It just shows you that we really put all our body, mind and soul on the line every single play,” Browns tight end David Njoku said Wednesday. “All we can do is pray and do whatever we can to help.
“I’m just praying he makes it out the best way possible.”
Hamlin’s injury has encouraged an outpouring of support from fans and the league. The Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton was lit in the Bills’ red, white and blue colors on Tuesday in a show of support, FOX 8 News reported. Hamlin’s $2,500 toy drive drew more than $6 million in donations as of Wednesday morning, Nexstar reported.
“It just goes to show that people are caring in the time it’s needed,” said Njoku. “It just warms me heart that people are trying to do what they can to help.”
The Browns are set to play the Steelers in Pittsburgh at 1 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 8.
Cornerback Greg Newsome said it’ll be tough to think about football, “especially when one of your fellow players goes down with an injury like that — a life-threatening injury.”
Newsome acknowledged what happened to him in his tackle on Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins “could happen to anybody in here” — but he’s trying not to dwell on it.
“Obviously, that could have happened to anybody; one play away. You can see, it can almost take your life,” he said. “Outside people are starting to see that we’re not just football players — that we’re humans.
“I feel like an event like that shows that we’re humans first. … We try to go and put on a show, but at the end of the day, our safety and our life matters.”