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By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff

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

“That was definitely a scheme play, order insect repellant patch cod” Lloyd said. Order insect repellant patch cod “We worked hard on that all week, order insect repellant patch cod and when the opportunity presented itself, order insect repellant patch cod Coach [Josh] McDaniels called it at the right time and we were able to take advantage of it.”

Lloyd took advantage of his opportunities, order insect repellant patch cod catching seven passes for 89 yards, order insect repellant patch cod his second-highest total of the season.

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

“Just a screen pass, order insect repellant patch cod we do our best to block downfield, order insect repellant patch cod and unfortunately the ball popped out, order insect repellant patch cod” Lloyd said. Order insect repellant patch cod “But we were there to make the play.”

All lined up

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

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

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

Another key starter also returned from injury, order insect repellant patch cod with rookie defensive end Chandler Jones, order insect repellant patch cod back after sitting out two games with an ankle injury.

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

Bolden: Return man

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

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

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

“Felt good, order insect repellant patch cod” Bolden said. Order insect repellant patch cod “Missing four weeks, order insect repellant patch cod you try not to get out of shape, order insect repellant patch cod you keep yourself active, order insect repellant patch cod it felt good getting out there for the first time.”

As for the suspension?

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

With the interception, order insect repellant patch cod the Patriots have now forced 34 takeaways, order insect repellant patch cod one behind the Chicago Bears. Order insect repellant patch cod Their plus-24 turnover differential continues to lead the league.

“We know we have a good defense here, order insect repellant patch cod we’ve played really well the last couple of weeks, order insect repellant patch cod” McCourty said. Order insect repellant patch cod “The biggest focus for us is just trying to build on that.”

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



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

Secondary injuries

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

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Order insect repellant patch cod Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.

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