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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

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

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

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

All lined up

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

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

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

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

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

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

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

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

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

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