|Third-quarter notes: Patriots 28, Texans 7||12.10.12 at 10:58 pm ET|
FOXBORO — The third quarter is done here at Gillette Stadium, and it appears that the Texans are done as well. New England holds a commanding 28-7 lead on Houston. Here are a few notes from the third quarter.
•The Patriots offense struggled at the end of the second quarter, and those issues continued at the start of the third when they were forced to punt after not being able to move the ball — after scoring on their first three drives of the night, the Patriots had drives of three, four, three, and six plays. New England broke through with its first scoring drive of the second half – a five-play, 74-yard drive that was highlighted by a 63-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady to Donte’ Stallworth that gave New England a 28-0 lead with 9:49 left in the third quarter. The play was the second-longest pass play of the season for the Patriots.
•After four punts, an interception and two failed fourth-down attempts, the Texans had a drive end with points midway through the third quarter. It was Houston’s finest offensive series of the night: a seven-play, 88-yard drive that took 3:37 and ended with a one-yard run from Arian Foster to make it 28-7. The big play of the drive came when Matt Schaub hit James Casey on a 30-yard pass play that got the Texans down to the New England 2 yard-line.
•The Patriots closed the third quarter on an impressive series, as Brady steered the New England offense to the Houston 27 with a nice sequence, including a 14-yard pass play to Brandon Lloyd, who finished the third quarter with five catches for 78 yards.
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