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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

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

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

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

All lined up

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

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

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

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

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

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

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

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

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Discount tazorac online Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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