The postponed Buffalo Bills-Cincinnati Bengals the game will not be formed after the terrifying collapse of safety Damar Hamlin, the league said Thursday.
With one game left in the regular season, the NFL is still working out the details of how the now-cancelled game will affect playoff standings.
The NFL recognized that canceling the game «creates potential competitive inequalities in certain playoff scenarios,» and said NFL clubs will consider a resolution at a special league meeting on Friday.
Part of this could involve the AFC Championship Game being played at a neutral site.
Because of the one canceled game, the Bills and Bengals will have played 16 games, while every other NFL team will have played 17.
The Bills had clinched the AFC East long ago and were in the driver’s seat for the No. 1 seed in the conference. Now 12-3, Buffalo trails Kansas City 13-3 for the top seed in the AFC, which carries a first-round playoff bye.
If the Bills had won Monday night, they would have had as many wins as the Chiefs while holding a tiebreaker over Kansas City.
The key contest between the first-place teams was canceled shortly after 10 p.m. ET on Monday, with the NFL says game had been ‘postponed’ — leaving the door ajar for Buffalo and Cincinnati to restart the game at another time.
When Hamlin went down, the Bengals led 7-3 in the first quarter.
Hamlin collapsed moments after dropping Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins. The play appeared to be routine as Hamlin quickly got up and briefly grabbed or adjusted his own mask before falling backwards.
Hamlin went into cardiac arrest but his brain function appeared to be in good condition, the Buffalo Bills said Thursday, after days of uncertainty and concern.
«Damar has shown a remarkable improvement in the last 24 hours,» said the the team tweeted. «Although he is still seriously ill, he has shown that he appears to be neurologically intact.»
in its final games of the regular season, the Bills will host the New England Patriots and the Bengals the Baltimore Ravens. Both games are at 1 pm ET on Sunday.
This is a developing story. Please check for updates.