Packers five-time Pro Bowl linebacker Clay Matthews insisted missing Monday morning’s practice with what coach Mike McCarthy termed “knee soreness” is not cause for alarm.

Asked how long he might be out, Matthews replied: “I don’t know. I have no idea. [We’re] just taking the car into the pit shop, getting the wheels changed, getting ready for the season.”

Given Matthews’ injury history and his importance to the Packers defense, any injury that would keep him off the field once the regular season begins Sept. 13 would be a major blow to a unit that turned around when the coaches began using him at inside linebacker. The Packers went from giving up 153.5 rushing yards per game in the first eight games last season to 86.4 in the final eight after Matthews moved inside.

• Packers tight end Andrew Quarless revealed he missed the first two days of training camp because his daughter died at birth last week. “It’s the saddest day of my life,” Quarless said. “I thank this team for the type of support they have given me to help me get through this. Just very thankful for these guys. It’s really a family in here.”

Injury risks irk Giants coach

The most spirited practice of Giants training camp so far left Tom Coughlin irritated by some of the unnecessary actions of his players.

A brief but action-packed fistfight between Justin Pugh and Damontre Moore along with a play in which aggressive pass-rushing led to quarterback Eli Manning hitting the ground had Coughlin grousing about the risk of injuries in those situations.

“You can’t have anybody get hurt in practice,” Coughlin said. “You’ve got to go hard, you’ve got to give great effort, you’ve got to play with great speed. But you can’t get anybody hurt.”

Former Lions RB Farr dead

Mel Farr, the Detroit Lions running back who rushed for over 3,000 yards in seven NFL seasons, died at age 70.

A Lions spokesman said Farr’s son confirmed his father died Monday.

Farr spent his entire career with Detroit, from 1967 to ’73. He was NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year in 1967, when he ran for 860 yards in 13 games.

Farr finished his pro career with 3,072 yards on 739 carries.


• Panthers starting defensive tackle Star Lotulelei will miss a “few weeks” because of a right foot injury. It’s the same foot Lotulelei fractured in January, preventing him from playing in the team’s NFC divisional playoff game against Seattle.

• Ravens safety Matt Elam will miss the season because of a biceps tear, injured while the 2013 first-round pick was attempting to wrap a receiver during practice Saturday.

• Lions defensive tackle Haloti Ngata missed the team’s first practice camp because of a strained hamstring.