Russell Wilson soars as Seahawks rout Bills 50-17

Seattle Seahawks tight end Zach Miller breaks into a big chuckle
when reminded about how many NFL teams passed up on drafting
Russell Wilson.

”Yeah,” Miller said. ”Good for us.”

Make room, RGIII and Andrew Luck. Wilson, the third-round draft
pick out of Wisconsin, is making a case to be included in the
rookie of the year conversation. And he’s bringing the Seahawks
along with them on a remarkable ride as part of a late-season
playoff surge in which they’ve won five of six.

Wilson had a near-perfect first half in which he ran for three
touchdowns and threw for another in leading the Seahawks to their
latest blowout victory, a 50-17 rout of the Bills in Buffalo’s
annual game in Toronto on Sunday.

Coming off a 58-0 win at home over Arizona last week, the
Seahawks became the NFL’s third team to score 50 points in
consecutive weeks, joining the Los Angeles Rams and New York
Giants, who both did it in 1950, according to STATS LLC. And
Seattle’s 108 combined points matched the third-best total, which
had been set by the New England Patriots only last month.

”I’m blessed to be a Seahawk. This is the team that I wanted to
come to,” said Wilson, the Wisconsin product who had to wait until
the 75th pick in the draft to be selected. ”So it’s a pretty great
situation for me.”

The Seahawks (9-5) are in the thick of the playoff race. And
they’re still in the running to challenge for the NFC West title,
preparing to head home for a showdown against division rival San
Francisco next weekend.

Wilson directed five straight scoring drives in helping the
Seahawks build a 31-7 lead. And then the defense took over by
forcing three consecutive turnovers to start the second half,
including safety Earl Thomas scoring on 57-yard interception
return.

The Bills (5-9) bumbled their way out of playoff contention for
a 13th straight year, and extend the NFL’s longest active playoff
drought.

And questions about coach Chan Gailey’s job security are once
again being raised.

”We played poorly and we looked extremely bad,” Gailey said.
”When you don’t play well, the buck stops with me. I understand
that.”

The Bills’ defense had a meltdown. After Buffalo had allowed its
past four opponents 254.25 yards offense and 16.75 points, the
Seahawks had bettered that by halftime, when they scored 31 points
and racked up 329 yards.

The offense wasn’t much better.

Down 31-17 at the half, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick opened the
third quarter by turning the ball over on the Bills first three
possessions – two interceptions and a lost fumble.

”It went downhill from there fast,” said Fitzpatrick, who
worried how the performance would reflect on Gailey. ”We played
poorly and it reflects poorly on him. It just eats me up.”

Fitzpatrick went 21 of 38 for 217 yards with a 20-yard touchdown
to Stevie Johnson. C.J. Spiller had 103 yards rushing and scored on
a 14-yard run.

It wasn’t lost on the Bills’ critics that they passed up three
chances to draft Wilson in April.

Gailey acknowledged he had shown interest in Wilson, but was
concerned that, at 5-foot-11 and 206 pounds, he might be too small
to succeed at the NFL level.

Turns out that hasn’t been a problem.

Wilson’s 4-yard touchdown pass to Zach Miller was his 21st of
the season. That ties Cam Newton (2011) for the second-most by an
NFL rookie, and is five behind the record set by Peyton Manning in
1998.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll is so impressed by how quickly
Wilson’s grasped the offense, that he’s giving the quarterback a
freer rein.

”I’m just thrilled that he’s been able to continue to grow,”
Carroll said. ”For a time, we were just trying to get the offense
going and not screw it up and make sure he could keep growing.
Well, we’re past that now.”

Running back Marshawn Lynch had 113 yards rushing and scored on
a 13-yard run in his first game against his former team. Defensive
end Chris Clemons had 2 1/2 of Seattle’s three sacks.

The Bills dropped to 1-4 in regular-season games at Toronto
since the series began in 2008.

The Bills and Toronto-based Rogers Communications are closing in
on a deal to extend the series, which expired after this game.

Torontonians might want to reconsider after this. With 5:20
left, fans in one end zone began chanting ”Let’s Go Blue
Jays!”

NOTES: Korean pop star PSY performed his hit ”Gangnam Style”
at midfield during halftime. … The announced crowd of 40,770 was
well below the downtown domed Rogers Centre’s capacity of 54,000.
… Spiller reached 1,000 yards rushing for the first time in his
career, and needed only 154 carries to get there. That’s the third
fewest carries of any player to reach 1,000 since 1991, according
to STATS. Then-Falcons QB Michael Vick reached that plateau on 117
carries in 2006, while Tennessee RB Chris Johnson needed 151
carries in 2009. … The Seahawks wore their third uniforms –
”wolf grey” jerseys and pants with green numbers and names – for
the first time since introducing them this offseason.

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