by Chris Warner, Patriots Daily Staff

What should have been a carefree romp through the fields of Houston turned into a costly cowplop as New England gave up 21 points in the final 10 minutes, blowing a 14-point lead to lose, 34-27. (We’re not even going to mention Wes Welker’s injury. Hey, why pile on?)

Perhaps no player had more to do with the fourth-quarter collapse than cornerback Jonathan Wilhite, though it should be noted that no defender should have left this game feeling good about himself.

A couple of tidbits in our defense (so to speak):

At 10:15 remaining, third and 15 from New England’s 46, Wilhite played several yards behind Jacoby Jones to allow a 17-yard completion. Jones scored the eight-yard TD catch two minutes later to cut the Pats’ lead to seven.

At the six-minute mark, Wilhite gave Andre Johnson the out pattern on a third and 12, allowing 15 yards. The Texans’ touchdown on this drive was set up by a 10-yard completion to Andra Davis that reached the one-yard line, also in front of Wilhite.

Therefore, Mr. Wilhite, for laying off of receivers at the wrong times and for your missed tackles on the day, we at PD ask you to take the infamous lap.

Also lap-worthy: The run defense for their absolute disappearance, especially during what turned out to be their final four plays. Arian Foster finished his day with runs of 6, 12, 7, and 3 yards, the last of which met about as much resistance from the Pats’ front seven as a hockey puck on fresh ice. Hey, inappropriately named run defense? Run a lap.

Email Chris Warner at chris.warner@patriotsdaily.com