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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

FOXBOROUGH — They might not have come right out and said it, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but the Patriots were fully aware of the attention given to the Houston Texans and their preference for play-action passes on offense.

So when quarterback Tom Brady perfectly sold a handoff the second time the Patriots had the ball, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra receiver Brandon Lloyd never broke stride, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra blowing past the Texans who bit on the run possibility. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He caught Brady’s pass without a defender near him, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra coasting into the end zone and pushing the Patriots’ lead to 14-0 in a game they would win handily, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 42-14, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Monday night at Gillette Stadium.

“That was definitely a scheme play, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra” Lloyd said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “We worked hard on that all week, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and when the opportunity presented itself, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Coach [Josh] McDaniels called it at the right time and we were able to take advantage of it.”

Lloyd took advantage of his opportunities, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra catching seven passes for 89 yards, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra his second-highest total of the season.

He scored two touchdowns, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the second coming on a fumble recovery in the end zone, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra after Danny Woodhead lost the ball on a screen pass. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The ball bounced forward, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with Lloyd diving on it. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Not how it’s drawn up, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but the way the night went.

“Just a screen pass, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra we do our best to block downfield, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and unfortunately the ball popped out, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra” Lloyd said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “But we were there to make the play.”

All lined up

Since the start of the season, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the Patriots’ depth chart on the offensive line read more like a wish list than a realistic starting lineup, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with an assortment of injuries resulting in five different combinations.

For the first time in a month, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and just the sixth time this season, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the Patriots began the game with the five players who are designated by the team as its starters: Nate Solder at left tackle, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Logan Mankins at left guard, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Ryan Wendell at center, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Dan Connolly at right guard, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and Sebastian Vollmer at right tackle.

The group was made whole again with the return of Mankins, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra who had missed three consecutive games — and five of six — with ankle and calf injuries. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He was back at practice last week, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra in a limited role, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but was in the starting lineup Monday night, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra relegating Donald Thomas to reserve status.

Another key starter also returned from injury, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with rookie defensive end Chandler Jones, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra back after sitting out two games with an ankle injury.

Tight end Rob Gronkowski missed his third straight game with a broken forearm. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The other inactive players were offensive linemen Nick McDonald and Markus Zusevics, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra defensive linemen Jake Bequette and Ron Brace, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra safety Derrick Martin, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and fullback James Develin, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra who was promoted from the practice squad to the 53-man roster on Nov. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 28, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but has yet to play.

Bolden: Return man

The Patriots made the expected move official roughly three hours before kickoff, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra activating Brandon Bolden to the 53-man roster and making him eligible to play against the Texans after the running back served a four-game suspension.

Bolden, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra a rookie from Mississippi, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra was suspended by the NFL on Nov. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 9 for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He hadn’t played since Oct. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 14 at Seattle, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra when he injured a knee against the Seahawks. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The injury cost him two games, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra then the suspension added four more.

With 234 yards on 43 carries, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Bolden came into the Texans game with the second-most rushing yards for the Patriots, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and his 5.4-yard average led the team. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Stevan Ridley has been the workhorse since Bolden was forced out, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra gaining 486 yards in the six games Bolden missed.

Bolden declined interview requests Saturday, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the first time he had been spotted in the locker room since the suspension was announced. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra But he was ready to talk after the game, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra in which he played on special teams and got two late carries for 11 yards.

“Felt good, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra” Bolden said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “Missing four weeks, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra you try not to get out of shape, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra you keep yourself active, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra it felt good getting out there for the first time.”

As for the suspension?

“It was a mistake. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Saddened that it happened, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but the team kept going, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra so just got to keep moving forward, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra” Bolden said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “Worked as hard as I could for as long as I could, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra make sure I don’t fall too far off.”

Turning their way

Devin McCourty’s end-zone interception on Houston’s second offensive series of the game extended the Patriots’ streak of forcing at least one turnover to 24 games. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The last team to force at least one turnover in every regular-season game was the 2010 Atlanta Falcons.

With the interception, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the Patriots have now forced 34 takeaways, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra one behind the Chicago Bears. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Their plus-24 turnover differential continues to lead the league.

“We know we have a good defense here, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra we’ve played really well the last couple of weeks, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra” McCourty said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “The biggest focus for us is just trying to build on that.”

Even when the Patriots fumbled the bounces went their way. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Ridley lost the ball on the Patriots’ first drive of the game, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra inside the Texans’ 5-yard-line, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but Aaron Hernandez jumped on it to extend the drive. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra On the next play, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Hernandez caught a 7-yard touchdown pass.



Early in the fourth quarter, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Woodhead fumbled after catching a screen pass and being hit from behind by J.J. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Watt. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The ball flew into the end zone, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with Lloyd diving on it for an unlikely touchdown.

Handing out Hall passes

If you’re a Patriots fan who’s never been to Canton, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Ohio, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and visited the Pro Football Hall of Fame, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Canton is coming to you this week. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Well, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra at least it’s coming to Foxborough. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra In recognition of the Hall of Fame’s 50th anniversary, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the busts of the five former Patriots who have been enshrined — John Hannah, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Andre Tippett, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Nick Buoniconti, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Mike Haynes, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and Curtis Martin — will be on display at the Hall at Patriot Place.

The weeklong celebration will culminate with Sunday night’s home game against the San Francisco 49ers, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with Tippett, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Haynes, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and Martin serving as honorary captains.

Secondary injuries

One downside to the Patriots’ victory was injuries to the defensive secondary. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The Patriots announced injuries to Aqib Talib (hip) and Alfonzo Dennard (hamstring). 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Neither returned to the game after getting injured . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra With Julian Edelman out for the season with a foot injury, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Wes Welker took over the Patriots’ punt return duties. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He returned four for 50 yards, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra with a long of 31 . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Welker also caught three passes, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra pushing his streak of consecutive regular-season games with a catch to 107 . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Donte Stallworth made the most of his return to the Patriots. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He caught only one pass from Brady, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra but the catch-and-run went for 63 yards and a touchdown in the third quarter, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra making it 28-0. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra It was a case of practice makes perfect, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra even if the practice had been a while ago. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “That particular play is something we had worked on, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra even in the spring, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra’’ he said. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “It was just an opportunity where they were kind of flat-footed and it gave me an opportunity to run by the guy and Tommy made a great throw. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He put it up for me to catch it and that’s what I did.’’ . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra His team off until Wednesday, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Celtics coach Doc Rivers was spotted on the sideline observing pregame warmups, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra wearing a Patriots red sweater and chatting up his Patriots counterpart, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Bill Belichick. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Also in on the conversation: Boston sports fan Mark Wahlberg. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo was also at the game, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra wearing a No. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 83 Patriots jersey . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The Patriots extended their December winning streak to 13 games, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra dating to a 22-21 loss at Miami on Dec. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 6, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 2009. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra It ties the Patriots for the second-longest such streak with the Dallas Cowboys, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra who accomplished the feat from 1968-72. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The record belongs to the San Diego Chargers, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra winners of 18 straight from 2006-09. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra New England also has won 21 straight games in the second half of the regular season. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The Patriots went 8-0 in the second half of 2010, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 8-0 in 2011, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra and have won their first five this season. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra The last loss from the back half of the schedule came in the regular-season finale in 2009, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra when the Patriots lost at Houston, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra 34-27 … In a pre-game Twitter message, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra self-described Patriots fan Donald Trump posted, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra “Good Luck to Bob Kraft, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Tom Brady and Coach Bob Belichick tonight.” Needless to say, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra the Donald got plenty of unwanted attention for his fumble . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra . 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Keep an eye out for Jerod Mayo on Tuesday. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra He’ll be joining Subway spokesman Jared Fogle during multiple appearances around town, 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra thanking unassuming fans with a dozen acts of kindness.

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. 0rz.tw 762c3 generic viagra Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

Source: http://bostonglobe.com/sports/2012/12/11/logan-mankins-returns-makes-patriots-line-whole/A1Xtp2mNJfSRC0vUxtSlUI/story.html