Skip to main content

In the days since Damar Hamlin made his first public appearance of sorts after experiencing cardiac arrest on Jan. 2, when he was shown cheering on the Buffalo Bills from a suite in Highmark Stadium on Sunday, a conspiracy theory has swirled online that it wasn't actually Hamlin.

Due to the fact that his face was obscured by the hood he was wearing and then the tinted glass of his suite, some have hatched the theory that a body double has been pretending to be Hamlin in recent weeks.

Hamlin's most high-profile teammate, Bills quarterback Josh Allen, emphatically shut that chatter down on Tuesday.

Appearing on "Kyle Brandt's Basement" with the NFL Network personality, Allen assured viewers that it was the real Hamlin in attendance, and that he met with the team in the locker room before and after the team's 27-10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals.

"That's stupid," Allen said. "One, that's Damar's swag. That's what he likes, he likes wearing that. Two, he was in the locker room with us pregame. So yes, that was Damar. There's absolutely zero chance. There's absolutely zero chance. That's the Damar Hamlin, that's our guy, our brother. He was with us pregame, postgame. He was up in the suite with his family, his little brother. One-hundred percent."

Hamlin has yet to speak publicly since his terrifying, on-field collapse, which necessitated CPR. However, he has been active on social media and has reportedly made regular appearances in the Buffalo Bills' facility since being released from the hospital on Jan. 11. He hinted in a Tuesday tweet that an announcement might be coming soon.

While Hamlin still has a ways to go in his recovery, the fact that he's not only awake and breathing on his own but cognitively intact and able to rehab outside the hospital represents remarkable progress.

Hopefully we continue to hear good news about his progress throughout the offseason.