MELBOURNE will be without captain Max Gawn and vice-captain Jack Viney for its clash with North Melbourne on Sunday.
The Demons have decided to rest Gawn as he deals with a tear in his shoulder/upper back that has restricted him in recent games.
The star ruckman will miss his clash with dominant Kangaroos big man Todd Goldstein at Adelaide Oval, while Viney has been ruled out due to concussion.
"Max won't play this week, he's still a little bit sore. He's got a few sore spots so with the short turnaround it's best to give him a rest," coach Simon Goodwin said on Saturday.
"We'll manage him and hopefully he's back next week."
Gawn admitted after the Dees' win over Adelaide on Wednesday that he was uncomfortable in the first half but grew into the game.
While the club will rest Gawn this week, the 28-year-old is expected to return against Collingwood next Saturday.
"It's not too serious. The torn muscle in his back is one thing, and he's got a little bit of soreness in his knee as well. They're two things we're monitoring pretty closely,” Goodwin said.
Goodwin is weighing up whether first-year NAB AFL Rising Star nominee Luke Jackson can handle the job singlehandedly or whether Braydon Preuss can be recalled to face his form side.
After his concussion late in the victory over the Crows, Viney was almost immediately deemed unavailable under concussion protocols.
Several changes loom for the Demons with Alex Neal-Bullen suspended for his sling tackle on young Crow Will Hamill.
Goodwin said the club was "incredibly disappointed" with the suspension.
"There's certainly no malice in what he did and he's obviously very remorseful of what's taken place," he said.
"The four weeks is a pretty big hefty penalty and one we'll have to live with."