Ups and downs for the Patriots

HOUSTON -- A look at New England Patriots players whose performance was "up" against the Houston Texans, and those at the opposite end of the spectrum:


James Develin: Fullback's 1-yard touchdown run is reflective of his career path from Brown University to the Arena Football League, the United Football League, an NFL practice squad and then an NFL roster -- a gutsy never-give-up effort.

Julian Edelman: Comes up big for the second week in a row and is currently the team's most reliable and consistent receiver.

Stephen Gostkowski: Two field goals from 53 yards in the second half are clutch.

Rob Gronkowski: Tight end continues to round into form and is a big factor in the passing game with another day over 100 yards receiving.

Offensive line: Solid protection for quarterback Tom Brady for much of the day as J.J. Watt isn't heard from often.


Kyle Arrington: Cornerback is in coverage on a 66-yard reception by receiver DeAndre Hopkins in the fourth quarter. Arrington was excellent in the slot last week against Wes Welker and the Broncos, but his struggles against Houston came on the outside.

Dont'a Hightower/run defense: Linebacker is one of several defenders to struggle getting off blocks and making tackles, as the Texans have success on the ground.

Kickoff coverage: Opening return of the game for the Texans got them started on the right foot.