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Damar Hamlin still has “lengthy recovery"; Tee Higgins hopes to see him Sunday

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Chris Simms explains why the injured Cincinnati Bengals offensive line leads him to believe that Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills will come out on top in this Week 17 rematch.

Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins has been in contact with Bills safety Damar Hamlin’s family since Hamlin went into cardiac arrest following a tackle of Higgins in a Week 17 game between the teams, but he hopes that changes this weekend.

Hamlin has been at the Bills facility since returning to Buffalo after his stay at a hospital in Cincinnati and there’s been talk that he could make an appearance at the divisional round game between the teams. That would provide an emotional lift to the Bills, but Higgins said he also hopes “to see him on the field Sunday and speak to him.”

“I’m pretty sure we’re just going to chop it up, laughs and giggles and just be happy to see him,” Higgins said, via Ben Baby of ESPN.com.

There were conflicting reports about Hamlin attending last weekend’s game against the Dolphins, but he ultimately stayed home. A spokesman for the Hamlin family offered a reminder this week that Hamlin still has a long way to go before a full recovery.

“Despite being out of the hospital, Damar still has a lengthy recovery,” Jordan Rooney said in a statement to ESPN. “Damar still requires oxygen and is having his heart monitored regularly. He has visited with the team a few times but he still gets winded very easily. He’s upbeat and positive and ready to continue to overcome this.”

The Bills and Bengals will kick off at 3 p.m. ET on Sunday.