FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Veteran running backs Mike Gillislee and Brandon Bolden headed the list of cuts as the New England Patriots got down to the NFL’s 53-player limit Saturday.

Gillislee, who was signed as a restricted free agent before last season, ran for 383 yards and five touchdowns in nine games for New England.

He and Bolden became expendable with the signing of free agent Jeremy Hill, who ran for 1,633 yards and 20 touchdowns with Cincinnati in 2015 and ’16 before an injury last year ended his season after just seven games.

He signed as a free agent in March.

Bolden, with the team since 2012, also was released on cutdown day last season but then quickly brought back and played in all 16 games – at running back and on special teams.

Cornerback and kick returner Cyrus Jones, a second-round pick in 2016 who missed all last season, and rookie quarterback Danny Etling were among 26 players released.

Four others were placed on injured reserve, including offensive linemen Isaiah Wynn – the team’s first-round pick – and Ulrick John, wide receiver Braxton Berrios and linebacker Christian Sam.

The moves cut the roster to 53, but that includes Julian Edelman, who is suspended for the first four games of the season for PED use, thus leaving one spot open.

The Patriots, who open their season at home against the Houston Texans next Sunday, already had traded safety Jordan Richards to the Atlanta Falcons and released five players before the official cutdown day.

Last year, Coach Bill Belichick was busy in the hours following trimming his roster, including trading backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett to the Indianapolis Colts for wide receiver Philip Dorsett.

Among those not cut were Jason McCourty, acquired from Cleveland to join his twin brother Devin in New England. Jason McCourty had trouble finding the field as a cornerback but showed versatility by moving to safety for the last two preseason games.

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