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Seahawks' Wilson last rookie QB standing

Bests RGIII as Seattle breaks road slump

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LANDOVER, Md. -- Russell Wilson raced ahead to throw the final block on Marshawn Lynch's go-ahead touchdown run, and the Seattle Seahawks finally had a victorious road show.

Robert Griffin III's knee buckled as he tried to field a bad shotgun snap, leaving the Washington Redskins an off-season to worry about their franchise player's health.

The last rookie quarterback standing in the NFL playoffs is Wilson -- the third-round pick who teamed with Lynch on Sunday to lead the Seahawks to a 24-14 victory over Griffin and the Redskins.

Lynch ran for 131 yards and Wilson completed 15 of 26 passes for 187 yards and ran eight times for 67 yards for the Seahawks, who overcame a 14-0 first-quarter hole -- their biggest deficit of the season -- and will visit the top-seeded Atlanta Falcons next Sunday.

"It was only two touchdowns, but it's still a big comeback and in this setting and the crowd, it's a marvelous statement about the guys resolve and what is going on," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. "It's not about how you start but how you finish."

Seattle will be riding a six-game winning streak, having left behind any doubts that the team can hold its own outside the Pacific Northwest. The Seahawks were 3-5 on the road in the regular season and had lost eight straight road playoff games, the last win coming in December 1983 against the Miami Dolphins.

The day began with three rookie quarterbacks in the playoffs, but No. 1 overall pick Andrew Luck was eliminated when the Indianapolis Colts lost 24-9 to the Baltimore Ravens earlier in the day.

Lynch's change-of-direction, 27-yard touchdown run -- with Wilson leading the way with a block on safety Madieu Williams near the goal line -- and a two-point conversion gave the Seahawks a 21-14 lead with 7:08 remaining.

"Marhsawn always tells me, 'Russ, I got your back, no matter what,"' Wilson said. "So I just try to help him out every once in a while when he gets downfield."

Then came the play that essentially put the outcome to rest.

On the second play of the Redskins' next possession, Griffin's heavily braced right knee buckled badly as he tried to field a bad shotgun snap on a second-and-22 at Washington's 12-yard line. He lay on the ground, unable to recover the ball as the Seahawks pounced on it.

Griffin walked off the field under his own power, but the Redskins announced he would not return. After a few minutes, Griffin walked back to the sideline and watched the end of the game. The extent of the injury was not immediately known.

Griffin was playing in his third game since spraining his right knee about a month ago against the Baltimore Ravens, and he had been looking gimpy since tumbling backward following an ill-advised sidearm throw in the first quarter.

Nevertheless, he stayed in the game. Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said he didn't pull Griffin because the quarterback wanted to continue.

"I think I did put myself at more risk," Griffin said. "But every time you get on the field, you're putting yourself on the line."

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 7, 2013 C6

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