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Bills Ready to 'Charge Forward,' Play for Damar Hamlin vs. Patriots

Buffalo Bills coach Sean McDermott and quarterback Josh Allen made their intentions clear ahead of Sunday's game against the New England Patriots: "Play for 3."

With tender hearts and minds, the Buffalo Bills remain ready to run through a brick wall.

Bills coach Sean McDermott and quarterback Josh Allen both found themselves getting choked up as they sat down with the media Thursday to discuss the situation surrounding Damar Hamlin for the first time since the second-year safety suffered from cardiac arrest on Monday.

But as incredible news of Hamlin's recovery surfaced Thursday morning, the Bills held their first practice of the week ahead of Sunday's game against the New England Patriots.

And while Hamlin's health remains the top priority, the Bills still have a Week 18 game scheduled to play. Safe to say the news of Hamlin's health improvements has Allen, McDermott and the rest of the team ready to take the field.

"We want to go out there and play for 3," Allen said. "Obviously we'll be playing with less heavy hearts now. Today's news was a lot of tears of joy, I'll tell you that."

McDermott admitted as well that Thursday's news was an emotional boost.

"The news we received today was a huge lift," he said.

Hamlin, who is currently only able to communicate with doctors through writing due to the presence of a breathing tube, reportedly asked who won Monday's game in one of his first responses of communication since awaking Wednesday night.

The news of Hamlin's recovery along with his father, Mario Hamlin, speaking with the team is lighting an emotional fire in Allen and the rest of the Bills ahead of Sunday.

"Mario talking to us as a team and the things that he told us - and really didn't tell us he demanded us - you can't not honor his request to go out there and charge forward to the best of our abilities," Allen said.

Sunday's game will be a sea of emotion shared between players, coaches and fans.

But while his health remains heavy on everyone's minds, playing for Damar is now the driving force for a Buffalo team that has its eyes on a Super Bowl.

"To know that that's what he wants, that's what his dad wants, I think guys are excited to get out there," Allen said.

The Bills (12-3) and Patriots (8-8) are set to kickoff at 1 p.m. ET from Highmark Stadium on Sunday.

You can follow Zach Dimmitt on Twitter at @ZachDimmitt7

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