No Rx Baclofen
By Michael Whitmer | Globe Staff
FOXBOROUGH — They might not have come right out and said it, no rx baclofen 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, no rx baclofen receiver Brandon Lloyd never broke stride, no rx baclofen blowing past the Texans who bit on the run possibility. No rx baclofen He caught Brady’s pass without a defender near him, no rx baclofen coasting into the end zone and pushing the Patriots’ lead to 14-0 in a game they would win handily, no rx baclofen 42-14, no rx baclofen Monday night at Gillette Stadium.
“That was definitely a scheme play, no rx baclofen” Lloyd said. No rx baclofen “We worked hard on that all week, no rx baclofen and when the opportunity presented itself, no rx baclofen Coach [Josh] McDaniels called it at the right time and we were able to take advantage of it.”
Lloyd took advantage of his opportunities, no rx baclofen catching seven passes for 89 yards, no rx baclofen his second-highest total of the season.
He scored two touchdowns, no rx baclofen the second coming on a fumble recovery in the end zone, no rx baclofen after Danny Woodhead lost the ball on a screen pass. No rx baclofen The ball bounced forward, no rx baclofen with Lloyd diving on it. No rx baclofen Not how it’s drawn up, no rx baclofen but the way the night went.
“Just a screen pass, no rx baclofen we do our best to block downfield, no rx baclofen and unfortunately the ball popped out, no rx baclofen” Lloyd said. No rx baclofen “But we were there to make the play.”
All lined up
Since the start of the season, no rx baclofen the Patriots’ depth chart on the offensive line read more like a wish list than a realistic starting lineup, no rx baclofen with an assortment of injuries resulting in five different combinations.
For the first time in a month, no rx baclofen and just the sixth time this season, no rx baclofen the Patriots began the game with the five players who are designated by the team as its starters: Nate Solder at left tackle, no rx baclofen Logan Mankins at left guard, no rx baclofen Ryan Wendell at center, no rx baclofen Dan Connolly at right guard, no rx baclofen and Sebastian Vollmer at right tackle.
The group was made whole again with the return of Mankins, no rx baclofen who had missed three consecutive games — and five of six — with ankle and calf injuries. No rx baclofen He was back at practice last week, no rx baclofen in a limited role, no rx baclofen but was in the starting lineup Monday night, no rx baclofen relegating Donald Thomas to reserve status.
Another key starter also returned from injury, no rx baclofen with rookie defensive end Chandler Jones, no rx baclofen back after sitting out two games with an ankle injury.
Tight end Rob Gronkowski missed his third straight game with a broken forearm. No rx baclofen The other inactive players were offensive linemen Nick McDonald and Markus Zusevics, no rx baclofen defensive linemen Jake Bequette and Ron Brace, no rx baclofen safety Derrick Martin, no rx baclofen and fullback James Develin, no rx baclofen who was promoted from the practice squad to the 53-man roster on Nov. No rx baclofen 28, no rx baclofen but has yet to play.
Bolden: Return man
The Patriots made the expected move official roughly three hours before kickoff, no rx baclofen 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, no rx baclofen a rookie from Mississippi, no rx baclofen was suspended by the NFL on Nov. No rx baclofen 9 for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. No rx baclofen He hadn’t played since Oct. No rx baclofen 14 at Seattle, no rx baclofen when he injured a knee against the Seahawks. No rx baclofen The injury cost him two games, no rx baclofen then the suspension added four more.
With 234 yards on 43 carries, no rx baclofen Bolden came into the Texans game with the second-most rushing yards for the Patriots, no rx baclofen and his 5.4-yard average led the team. No rx baclofen Stevan Ridley has been the workhorse since Bolden was forced out, no rx baclofen gaining 486 yards in the six games Bolden missed.
Bolden declined interview requests Saturday, no rx baclofen the first time he had been spotted in the locker room since the suspension was announced. No rx baclofen But he was ready to talk after the game, no rx baclofen in which he played on special teams and got two late carries for 11 yards.
“Felt good, no rx baclofen” Bolden said. No rx baclofen “Missing four weeks, no rx baclofen you try not to get out of shape, no rx baclofen you keep yourself active, no rx baclofen it felt good getting out there for the first time.”
As for the suspension?
“It was a mistake. No rx baclofen Saddened that it happened, no rx baclofen but the team kept going, no rx baclofen so just got to keep moving forward, no rx baclofen” Bolden said. No rx baclofen “Worked as hard as I could for as long as I could, no rx baclofen 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. No rx baclofen The last team to force at least one turnover in every regular-season game was the 2010 Atlanta Falcons.
With the interception, no rx baclofen the Patriots have now forced 34 takeaways, no rx baclofen one behind the Chicago Bears. No rx baclofen Their plus-24 turnover differential continues to lead the league.
“We know we have a good defense here, no rx baclofen we’ve played really well the last couple of weeks, no rx baclofen” McCourty said. No rx baclofen “The biggest focus for us is just trying to build on that.”
Even when the Patriots fumbled the bounces went their way. No rx baclofen Ridley lost the ball on the Patriots’ first drive of the game, no rx baclofen inside the Texans’ 5-yard-line, no rx baclofen but Aaron Hernandez jumped on it to extend the drive. No rx baclofen On the next play, no rx baclofen Hernandez caught a 7-yard touchdown pass.
Early in the fourth quarter, no rx baclofen Woodhead fumbled after catching a screen pass and being hit from behind by J.J. No rx baclofen Watt. No rx baclofen The ball flew into the end zone, no rx baclofen 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, no rx baclofen Ohio, no rx baclofen and visited the Pro Football Hall of Fame, no rx baclofen Canton is coming to you this week. No rx baclofen Well, no rx baclofen at least it’s coming to Foxborough. No rx baclofen In recognition of the Hall of Fame’s 50th anniversary, no rx baclofen the busts of the five former Patriots who have been enshrined — John Hannah, no rx baclofen Andre Tippett, no rx baclofen Nick Buoniconti, no rx baclofen Mike Haynes, no rx baclofen 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, no rx baclofen with Tippett, no rx baclofen Haynes, no rx baclofen and Martin serving as honorary captains.
One downside to the Patriots’ victory was injuries to the defensive secondary. No rx baclofen The Patriots announced injuries to Aqib Talib (hip) and Alfonzo Dennard (hamstring). No rx baclofen Neither returned to the game after getting injured . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen With Julian Edelman out for the season with a foot injury, no rx baclofen Wes Welker took over the Patriots’ punt return duties. No rx baclofen He returned four for 50 yards, no rx baclofen with a long of 31 . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen Welker also caught three passes, no rx baclofen pushing his streak of consecutive regular-season games with a catch to 107 . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen Donte Stallworth made the most of his return to the Patriots. No rx baclofen He caught only one pass from Brady, no rx baclofen but the catch-and-run went for 63 yards and a touchdown in the third quarter, no rx baclofen making it 28-0. No rx baclofen It was a case of practice makes perfect, no rx baclofen even if the practice had been a while ago. No rx baclofen “That particular play is something we had worked on, no rx baclofen even in the spring, no rx baclofen’’ he said. No rx baclofen “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. No rx baclofen He put it up for me to catch it and that’s what I did.’’ . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen His team off until Wednesday, no rx baclofen Celtics coach Doc Rivers was spotted on the sideline observing pregame warmups, no rx baclofen wearing a Patriots red sweater and chatting up his Patriots counterpart, no rx baclofen Bill Belichick. No rx baclofen Also in on the conversation: Boston sports fan Mark Wahlberg. No rx baclofen Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo was also at the game, no rx baclofen wearing a No. No rx baclofen 83 Patriots jersey . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen The Patriots extended their December winning streak to 13 games, no rx baclofen dating to a 22-21 loss at Miami on Dec. No rx baclofen 6, no rx baclofen 2009. No rx baclofen It ties the Patriots for the second-longest such streak with the Dallas Cowboys, no rx baclofen who accomplished the feat from 1968-72. No rx baclofen The record belongs to the San Diego Chargers, no rx baclofen winners of 18 straight from 2006-09. No rx baclofen New England also has won 21 straight games in the second half of the regular season. No rx baclofen The Patriots went 8-0 in the second half of 2010, no rx baclofen 8-0 in 2011, no rx baclofen and have won their first five this season. No rx baclofen The last loss from the back half of the schedule came in the regular-season finale in 2009, no rx baclofen when the Patriots lost at Houston, no rx baclofen 34-27 … In a pre-game Twitter message, no rx baclofen self-described Patriots fan Donald Trump posted, no rx baclofen “Good Luck to Bob Kraft, no rx baclofen Tom Brady and Coach Bob Belichick tonight.” Needless to say, no rx baclofen the Donald got plenty of unwanted attention for his fumble . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen . No rx baclofen Keep an eye out for Jerod Mayo on Tuesday. No rx baclofen He’ll be joining Subway spokesman Jared Fogle during multiple appearances around town, no rx baclofen thanking unassuming fans with a dozen acts of kindness.
Michael Whitmer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. No rx baclofen Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.