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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

“That was definitely a scheme play, buy cheap viramune online” Lloyd said. Buy cheap viramune online “We worked hard on that all week, buy cheap viramune online and when the opportunity presented itself, buy cheap viramune 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 viramune online catching seven passes for 89 yards, buy cheap viramune online his second-highest total of the season.

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

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

All lined up

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

For the first time in a month, buy cheap viramune online and just the sixth time this season, buy cheap viramune 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 viramune online Logan Mankins at left guard, buy cheap viramune online Ryan Wendell at center, buy cheap viramune online Dan Connolly at right guard, buy cheap viramune online and Sebastian Vollmer at right tackle.

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

Another key starter also returned from injury, buy cheap viramune online with rookie defensive end Chandler Jones, buy cheap viramune 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 viramune online The other inactive players were offensive linemen Nick McDonald and Markus Zusevics, buy cheap viramune online defensive linemen Jake Bequette and Ron Brace, buy cheap viramune online safety Derrick Martin, buy cheap viramune online and fullback James Develin, buy cheap viramune online who was promoted from the practice squad to the 53-man roster on Nov. Buy cheap viramune online 28, buy cheap viramune online but has yet to play.

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

“It was a mistake. Buy cheap viramune online Saddened that it happened, buy cheap viramune online but the team kept going, buy cheap viramune online so just got to keep moving forward, buy cheap viramune online” Bolden said. Buy cheap viramune online “Worked as hard as I could for as long as I could, buy cheap viramune 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 viramune 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 viramune online the Patriots have now forced 34 takeaways, buy cheap viramune online one behind the Chicago Bears. Buy cheap viramune online Their plus-24 turnover differential continues to lead the league.

“We know we have a good defense here, buy cheap viramune online we’ve played really well the last couple of weeks, buy cheap viramune online” McCourty said. Buy cheap viramune 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 viramune online Ridley lost the ball on the Patriots’ first drive of the game, buy cheap viramune online inside the Texans’ 5-yard-line, buy cheap viramune online but Aaron Hernandez jumped on it to extend the drive. Buy cheap viramune online On the next play, buy cheap viramune online Hernandez caught a 7-yard touchdown pass.



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

Secondary injuries

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

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

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