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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

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

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

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

All lined up

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

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

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

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

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

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

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

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

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Buy discount cholestoplex Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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