Tears flooded the field as Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin underwent CPR during Monday night’s game; since then, the NFL has implemented many mental health resources throughout the league.
Tee Higgins of the Cincinnati Bengals was the last person to make contact with Hamlin before he went into cardiac arrest. As thoughts and prayers turned to Hamlin, many took pains to remind the Bengals receiver that it wasn’t his fault what happened.
One of those many was Higgins’ teammate, fellow catcher Tyler Boyd.
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Higgins received «disrespectful» criticism, Boyd told reporters on Thursday, so he wanted to make sure his teammate was okay.
«Tee has a good head on his shoulders, and he didn’t take it too badly, but I stuck with him because I know how he felt after the game,» Boyd said. «There was a lot going on on Twitter and social media, but I know it’s not his fault at all. With all that politics and whoever is saying what he’s saying is wrong for that. It’s very disrespectful, I feel like, because Tee’s a being human, too. Could have freaked out. Could have been Tee. It’s football, at the end of the day. I felt for him.»
Boyd said he saw «everyone picking on Tee» but knew how bad Higgins felt, considering the relationship of both receivers with Hamlin before Monday.
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«People don’t really know the relationship I was building with him. I brought him to my camp with D Hamlin, they became friends and probably knew each other before because they played against each other,» Boyd said. , adding that the relationship between the three players was «always genuine».
Boyd said that there were friendly conversations between Hamlin and Boyd and Higgins, and that Boyd and Hamlin even planned to swap jerseys after the game.
Higgins, Boyd says, like everyone else, was happy to hear the positive revelations about Hamlin’s condition.
«He’s doing well now that Hamlin is doing well, so that’s the most important thing,» Boyd said.
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Hamlin woke up, responded to the doctors’ orders and contacted them in writing, asking who won Monday night’s game.