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Originally published December 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM | Page modified December 17, 2012 at 9:40 AM

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Russell Wilson's legs adding another dimension to maturing offense

Wilson has already run for more yards than any other quarterback in Seattle history, which has helped the Seahawks' offensive explosion.

Seattle Times staff reporter

Russell Wilson's amazing day

Did you know?

• He's the first quarterback to run for three touchdowns in one half since Daunte Culpepper against Chicago on Sept. 3, 2000 (and the only one to do it in the first half).

• Wilson is the first player in NFL history with three rushing TDs and a passing TD in the first half of a game.

• Has a 62.9 completion percentage, second for NFL rookies seasons (Ben Roethlisberger, 66.44 in 2004)

Source: Elias Sports Bureau; STATS

Rookie QB history
Russell Wilson is tied for third for passing touchdowns for an NFL rookie quarterback.
Passing TDs
26 Peyton Manning 1998
22 Charlie Conerly 1948
21 Russell Wilson 2012
21 Cam Newton 2011
Wilson's passer rating ranks third for NFL rookie seasons.
QB rating
98.1 B. Roethlisberger 2004
96.0 Dan Marino 1983
95.5 Russell Wilson 2012
Source: NFL
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He's not a running QB, he's a QB who can run :) MORE
You know one thing that I've noticed about Russ vs RGIII? When he runs, he runs like a... MORE
Mr Wilson is playing so well it has to suprise everyone except maybe him. I thought ... MORE

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TORONTO — There are some legs to this argument that Russell Wilson might be the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year.

Wilson showed that by rushing for three touchdowns in the first half of Seattle's game against Buffalo at the Rogers Centre, finishing the game with 92 yards rushing and leading scoring drives on Seattle's first five possessions of the game.

Seattle scored 50 points for a second consecutive week, showing how far it has come from the team that spent the first month-and-a-half of the season trying to grind out victories with a minimalist approach in its offense.

"You can see now we are really playing offense with Russell," coach Pete Carroll said. "For a long time, we were just trying to get our offense going and not screw it up and make sure that he could keep growing and keep taking positive steps."

And now?

"We're past that," Carroll said. "Whatever we're calling, something good can happen."

Wilson completed nine of his 13 passes in the first half and finished the game with 205 yards, including a 4-yard touchdown throw to tight end Zach Miller.

Seattle's overtime victory in Chicago is looking like a turning point for the season. Wilson led Seattle on back-to-back touchdown drives to win that game, and the Seahawks haven't looked back.

"It's a quarterback-driven league," fullback Michael Robinson said, "and as our quarterback gets better, we get better."

For the third consecutive road game Wilson was not intercepted, and he's becoming the kind of running threat that is a serious headache for defenses.

Wilson averaged 20.6 yards rushing over the first 11 games of this season. He has averaged 58.3 in the past three, and he has already rushed for more yards in a season than any Seahawk quarterback before him.

He has gained 402 yards on the ground with two games still to play, passing Rick Mirer, whose 343 yards rushing in 1993 had been the most by a Seahawks player at that position.

The read-option has become a staple of Seattle's offense, and just one more way the Seahawks have expanded what they do while keeping their quarterback as the centerpiece.

"Our offense is really explosive right now," Wilson said. "We do many, multiple, different things to attack the defense in terms of throwing the ball, in terms of running, a couple of trick plays here and there. It's hard to stop."

And Buffalo didn't come close to doing that Sunday.

Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or doneil@seattletimes.com. On Twitter @dannyoneil.

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