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Tom Brady, other Patriots stars to sit vs. Eagles

With a long week ahead for his team, Bill Belichick is taking a cautious approach for the New England Patriots' Monday night matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles.

NFL Network has learned the team will rest several key players, including Tom Brady, Jerod Mayo, Brandon Lloyd, Aaron Hernandez, Wes Welker and Rob Gronkowski.

The Boston Herald reported Monday that an intense upcoming schedule is the Patriots' primary reason for shutting down their high-profile players. After Monday's game, the team will fly to Tampa on Tuesday to participate in two joint practices with the Buccaneers. The teams then will meet in a preseason game Friday.

The Patriots play three games over the next 10 days. Brady and other starters ran limited reps in practice Monday, according to the Herald, a hint of the team's game plan against the Eagles.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.

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