England coach Stuart Lancaster is set to leave captain Chris Robshaw out of his squad for the summer tour of Uruguay and Argentina.
Lancaster announces his squad on Wednesday and is expected to give his skipper, fly-half Toby Flood and wing Chris Ashton the summer off so they can recharge their batteries after an exhausting season.
Northampton back-row Tom Wood - outstanding for England in the Six Nations - is tipped to be appointed captain.
Wood was the favourite to be named England captain ahead of the 2012 Six Nations but suffered a foot injury, handing Robshaw the chance to take the armband.
England play the Barbarians at Twickenham on May 26 and a South American XV in Montevideo on June 2 before Tests against the Pumas in Salta and Buenos Aires on June 8 and 15.
Worcester flanker Matt Kvesic, who will join Gloucester at the end of the season and Exeter's Tom Johnson will battle for the No 7 shirt. Gloucester's Freddie Burns will travel as England's first-choice fly-half, with Bath-bound George Ford as his back-up.
Christian Wade, who finished the regular season as the Premiership's joint-leading try-scorer with 13, Jonny May and young London Irish flyer Marlande Yarde are all expected to be included.
Robshaw, disappointed to miss out on British and Irish Lions selection last week, insists he is happy to lead England on tour, but will follow the orders of Lancaster.
"When you look at first seasons, I always think a bit of adrenaline gets your through but the second season is the biggest challenge," Robshaw said.
"From an England captain perspective it has been like that. There have been a lot of challenges thrown our way and it has been tough at times and it has been enjoyable at times.
"I am sure at some stage I will get a rest over the summer and I will embrace it with both arms and switch off from rugby.
"You always want to play for your country and to be captain is a huge honour. Sometimes you can get caught up in playing and it is easier for other people to see the bigger picture.
"That is why they are the bosses, because they have that long-term vision and they can see those things.
"I will listen to his (Lancaster's) point of view and I will respect that."