Four days after Friday night’s preseason finale against the Titans, the Patriots will need to have their initial 53-man roster finalized.

As of Thursday, New England’s roster featured 89 players, meaning it’ll need to remove at least 36 — through cuts, trades or injured reserve designations — to reach the NFL-mandated regular-season limit.

The majority of those roster spots already have been decided. But some remain up for grabs. The exhibition matchup in Tennessee will be the final opportunity for players on the roster bubble to prove they deserve a place on the 53.

Here are eight such players we’ll have our eye on Friday night:

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WR Kayshon Boutte (No. 80)
A week into training camp, Boutte looked like a roster long shot. But the sixth-round rookie steadily improved. He closed out camp with his best week yet, scoring a 42-yard touchdown in last Saturday’s exhibition matchup with Green Bay before catching all nine of his targets across the final two preseason practices. With Tyquan Thornton on the shelf with a shoulder injury that could linger into the season, has Boutte done enough to enter Week 1 as the No. 5 receiver?

QB/WR Malik Cunningham (No. 16)
Cunningham won’t be contributing at wideout any time soon. He’s looked extremely raw there and endured a rough outing against the Packers, finishing without a catch on five targets. But the undrafted rookie has impressed in his sporadic quarterback reps, showcasing the type of elite athleticism that none of New England’s other three signal-callers possess. The Patriots’ final decision with Cunningham could hinge on whether they believe they can get him onto their practice squad. It wouldn’t be surprising to see a team like Lamar Jackson’s Baltimore Ravens claim him if he’s waived.

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TEs Matt Sokol (No. 87) and Anthony Firkser (No. 86)
With Mike Gesicki still working his way back from a dislocated shoulder, it makes sense for the Patriots to carry three tight ends. Which one they choose could come down to preference. Firkser has a much better track record as an NFL pass-catcher (115 receptions over five seasons), but Sokol is a sturdier blocker. Expect both to see plenty of playing time Friday night.

OL Jake Andrews (No. 67)
Fourth-round pick Sidy Sow and fifth-rounder Atonio Mafi will be on the 53-man roster (and potentially even starting in Week 1, depending on the injury statuses of Cole Strange and Mike Onwenu). Andrews was drafted before both of them (Round 4, No. 107 overall), but his spot on the 53 is not guaranteed. The Troy product has been the worst of the three rookie linemen this summer and has seen minimal work with the offensive regulars. The Patriots aren’t likely to cut a fourth-round pick, but he’s a prime “Foxboro Flu” candidate.

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DT Sam Roberts (No. 96)
There’s a lot to like about Roberts, who offers an intriguing blend of size, length and disruptive capability. But can the Patriots fit the 2022 sixth-rounder into a D-line that features Davon Godchaux, Lawrence Guy, Christian Barmore, Deatrich Wise, Carl Davis, Daniel Ekuale and impressive rookie Keion White? Roberts’ two penalties against Green Bay didn’t help his cause.

CB Shaun Wade (No. 26)
A week ago, Wade’s odds of sticking on the roster appeared low. But with Jonathan Jones, Isaiah Bolden and now Christian Gonzalez all dealing with injuries, the Patriots might need to dive deeper into their cornerback group than anticipated. Wade did not impress against Green Bay — receiver Jayden Reed beat him cleanly for a touchdown — but he has been a ball hawk on the practice field. The Patriots also have tried him out at several different positions, giving the former Ohio State star reps outside, inside and at safety.

K Chad Ryland (No. 38)
Like Andrews, fourth-rounder Ryland is unlikely to be released, especially since the Patriots traded up to make him their highest-drafted specialist of the Bill Belichick era. And the confident Maryland product hasn’t been bad this summer. He’s looked solid. But he hasn’t decisively won the job over Nick Folk despite boasting a much stronger leg than the veteran incumbent. In one practice this week, Ryland missed three straight field goals, all wide left, with one sailing a good 10 feet outside the goal post. If he scuffles in Tennessee, New England could opt to keep both kickers.

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