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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

FOXBOROUGH — They might not have come right out and said it, buy cheap nicotinell online 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, buy cheap nicotinell online receiver Brandon Lloyd never broke stride, buy cheap nicotinell online blowing past the Texans who bit on the run possibility. Buy cheap nicotinell online He caught Brady’s pass without a defender near him, buy cheap nicotinell online coasting into the end zone and pushing the Patriots’ lead to 14-0 in a game they would win handily, buy cheap nicotinell online 42-14, buy cheap nicotinell online Monday night at Gillette Stadium.

“That was definitely a scheme play, buy cheap nicotinell online” Lloyd said. Buy cheap nicotinell online “We worked hard on that all week, buy cheap nicotinell online and when the opportunity presented itself, buy cheap nicotinell online Coach [Josh] McDaniels called it at the right time and we were able to take advantage of it.”

Lloyd took advantage of his opportunities, buy cheap nicotinell online catching seven passes for 89 yards, buy cheap nicotinell online his second-highest total of the season.

He scored two touchdowns, buy cheap nicotinell online the second coming on a fumble recovery in the end zone, buy cheap nicotinell online after Danny Woodhead lost the ball on a screen pass. Buy cheap nicotinell online The ball bounced forward, buy cheap nicotinell online with Lloyd diving on it. Buy cheap nicotinell online Not how it’s drawn up, buy cheap nicotinell online but the way the night went.

“Just a screen pass, buy cheap nicotinell online we do our best to block downfield, buy cheap nicotinell online and unfortunately the ball popped out, buy cheap nicotinell online” Lloyd said. Buy cheap nicotinell online “But we were there to make the play.”

All lined up

Since the start of the season, buy cheap nicotinell online the Patriots’ depth chart on the offensive line read more like a wish list than a realistic starting lineup, buy cheap nicotinell online with an assortment of injuries resulting in five different combinations.

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

The group was made whole again with the return of Mankins, buy cheap nicotinell online who had missed three consecutive games — and five of six — with ankle and calf injuries. Buy cheap nicotinell online He was back at practice last week, buy cheap nicotinell online in a limited role, buy cheap nicotinell online but was in the starting lineup Monday night, buy cheap nicotinell online relegating Donald Thomas to reserve status.

Another key starter also returned from injury, buy cheap nicotinell online with rookie defensive end Chandler Jones, buy cheap nicotinell online back after sitting out two games with an ankle injury.

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

Bolden: Return man

The Patriots made the expected move official roughly three hours before kickoff, buy cheap nicotinell online 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, buy cheap nicotinell online a rookie from Mississippi, buy cheap nicotinell online was suspended by the NFL on Nov. Buy cheap nicotinell online 9 for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. Buy cheap nicotinell online He hadn’t played since Oct. Buy cheap nicotinell online 14 at Seattle, buy cheap nicotinell online when he injured a knee against the Seahawks. Buy cheap nicotinell online The injury cost him two games, buy cheap nicotinell online then the suspension added four more.

With 234 yards on 43 carries, buy cheap nicotinell online Bolden came into the Texans game with the second-most rushing yards for the Patriots, buy cheap nicotinell online and his 5.4-yard average led the team. Buy cheap nicotinell online Stevan Ridley has been the workhorse since Bolden was forced out, buy cheap nicotinell online gaining 486 yards in the six games Bolden missed.

Bolden declined interview requests Saturday, buy cheap nicotinell online the first time he had been spotted in the locker room since the suspension was announced. Buy cheap nicotinell online But he was ready to talk after the game, buy cheap nicotinell online in which he played on special teams and got two late carries for 11 yards.

“Felt good, buy cheap nicotinell online” Bolden said. Buy cheap nicotinell online “Missing four weeks, buy cheap nicotinell online you try not to get out of shape, buy cheap nicotinell online you keep yourself active, buy cheap nicotinell online it felt good getting out there for the first time.”

As for the suspension?

“It was a mistake. Buy cheap nicotinell online Saddened that it happened, buy cheap nicotinell online but the team kept going, buy cheap nicotinell online so just got to keep moving forward, buy cheap nicotinell online” Bolden said. Buy cheap nicotinell online “Worked as hard as I could for as long as I could, buy cheap nicotinell online 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. Buy cheap nicotinell online The last team to force at least one turnover in every regular-season game was the 2010 Atlanta Falcons.

With the interception, buy cheap nicotinell online the Patriots have now forced 34 takeaways, buy cheap nicotinell online one behind the Chicago Bears. Buy cheap nicotinell online Their plus-24 turnover differential continues to lead the league.

“We know we have a good defense here, buy cheap nicotinell online we’ve played really well the last couple of weeks, buy cheap nicotinell online” McCourty said. Buy cheap nicotinell online “The biggest focus for us is just trying to build on that.”

Even when the Patriots fumbled the bounces went their way. Buy cheap nicotinell online Ridley lost the ball on the Patriots’ first drive of the game, buy cheap nicotinell online inside the Texans’ 5-yard-line, buy cheap nicotinell online but Aaron Hernandez jumped on it to extend the drive. Buy cheap nicotinell online On the next play, buy cheap nicotinell online Hernandez caught a 7-yard touchdown pass.



Early in the fourth quarter, buy cheap nicotinell online Woodhead fumbled after catching a screen pass and being hit from behind by J.J. Buy cheap nicotinell online Watt. Buy cheap nicotinell online The ball flew into the end zone, buy cheap nicotinell online 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, buy cheap nicotinell online Ohio, buy cheap nicotinell online and visited the Pro Football Hall of Fame, buy cheap nicotinell online Canton is coming to you this week. Buy cheap nicotinell online Well, buy cheap nicotinell online at least it’s coming to Foxborough. Buy cheap nicotinell online In recognition of the Hall of Fame’s 50th anniversary, buy cheap nicotinell online the busts of the five former Patriots who have been enshrined — John Hannah, buy cheap nicotinell online Andre Tippett, buy cheap nicotinell online Nick Buoniconti, buy cheap nicotinell online Mike Haynes, buy cheap nicotinell online 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, buy cheap nicotinell online with Tippett, buy cheap nicotinell online Haynes, buy cheap nicotinell online and Martin serving as honorary captains.

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Buy cheap nicotinell online Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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