UPDATE: Following backlash, Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin has publicly apologized for the jacket he wore while on the field at Super Bowl LVII, which some Christians characterized as depicting Jesus in a manner that was “blasphemous.”
Hamlin appeared at the Super Bowl to honor the first responders and medical personnel credited with saving his life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during a game on January 2.
The jacket Hamlin wore during the appearance featured a cartoonish, zombie-looking depiction of Jesus hanging on the cross.
“After talking with my parents I understand how my coat could have offended some people. It was never my intentions to hurt or disrespect anyone, the coat is abstract art to me. It says Eternal which I am Eternally thankful to my Savior,” Hamlin tweeted on Wednesday. “My beliefs and Relationship with God is not tied to symbolic images. I will learn from this and continue to walk in Love as I ALWAYS have. Matthew 7:1-5.”
ChurchLeaders original article written on Feb. 15, 2023, below:
Adrian Peterson Blasts Damar Hamlin for ‘Blasphemous’ Jacket Worn at Super Bowl
Damar Hamlin, Buffalo Bills safety who suffered a cardiac arrest during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Jan. 2, is taking heat for wearing a jacket to the Super Bowl that appeared to be mocking Jesus on the cross.
Hamlin suffered his injury after initiating a tackle on Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins. Hamlin stood to his feet after the tackle but three seconds later fell lifelessly to the ground, requiring medical personnel to administer CPR for nine minutes.
Players, coaches, and team personnel were visibly shaken by the incident, many of whom had tears running down their faces. Before Hamlin was placed in an ambulance that was brought onto the field, television viewers witnessed players on their knees praying for Hamlin. Prayer circles also broke out throughout the stadium.
RELATED: ESPN Analyst Dan Orlovsky Prays for Damar Hamlin on Live TV—‘Maybe This Is Not the Right Thing To Do, but I Want To’
The game that was paused at the six minute mark in the first quarter was eventually cancelled.
Hamlin was in a medically induced coma and in critical condition for three nights. He then spent the next nine days at two different hospitals before being released.
During those three days when Hamlin’s prognosis was unknown, players, coaches, teams, celebrities, fans, and others made it known that they were praying for Hamlin’s life and healing. In one instance, former NFL quarterback turned ESPN football analyst Dan Orlovsky spontaneously prayed for Hamlin during a broadcast of NFL Live.