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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

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

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

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

All lined up

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

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

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

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

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

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

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

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

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Buy robaxin in us Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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