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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

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

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

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

All lined up

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

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

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

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

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

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

As for the suspension?

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

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

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

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Discount viagra super active Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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