As the Giants prepare for the start of training camp next week, at least one player who already has two Super Bowl rings gets the feeling that this could be another special year.
Cornerback Aaron Ross thinks it could end with the team winning a third title in the Tom Coughlin era and becoming the first to win a Super Bowl at its home stadium.
"I've been seeing everybody has that hunger again like the two other Super Bowls,'' said Ross, who re-signed with the Giants after spending the 2012 season with Jacksonville. "I'm not sure what happened last year, but a lot of mental busts and maybe a little bit of complacency set in after the Super Bowl. But this year, you can tell with coach Coughlin -- starts with him -- how hard he's pushing the team, how hard he's pushing everybody.''
Ross, speaking at the Manhattan premiere of "Sanya's Glam & Gold'' -- a six-part documentary beginning July 25 on "We tv'' featuring his wife, four-time Olympic gold-medal winner Sanya Richards-Ross, and the cornerback -- said he feels a similar vibe to the start of the Giants' other two Super Bowl-winning seasons under Coughlin. Not only that, but there's some added motivation this time with the Super Bowl set to be played at MetLife Stadium.
"I do feel that, especially since I came back after being away,'' said Ross, who was with the Giants for their championship runs after the 2007 and 2011 seasons. "It seems like everybody has that hunger, plus the Super Bowl is going to be played in our stadium. We can't have anybody else playing in our backyard.''
Ross said a hometown Super Bowl has been a frequent topic of conversation among the players.
"We've talked about it, and it's another goal that coach Coughlin put in front of us,'' he said. "Guys are hungry to achieve that goal.''
If the Giants are to achieve that goal, they'll have to show some big-time improvement on defense, particularly in the secondary, where frequent breakdowns helped sabotage their chances last year.
"We have a great secondary,'' said Ross, who will compete to be the team's nickel corner. "Where we struggle is where we make mental busts, but I think we're doing a better job in getting the fundamentals down, learning the defense in and out and taking it rep by rep instead of moving too fast to learn the defense.
"I think the coaches sat down this whole offseason and seen that on film,'' he said. "They're doing a great job in really breaking down the defense in and out, making sure the safeties know exactly what the corners are doing and the corners know what the safeties are doing.''
Ross wasn't alone in his confidence heading into camp. Guard Kevin Boothe, also on hand at the premiere on Monday night, said the Giants are good enough to make a run.
"I definitely like our chances," he said. "We have a great team, a great mix of veteran leadership and youth.''
Did the Giants lose their hunger last year after winning the previous Super Bowl?
"I think it's easy to say after an unsuccessful season there was complacency, but for whatever reason, we didn't get it done last year,'' Boothe said. "But we're excited and confident this year. We have a lot of guys that know what it's like to play championship-caliber football.''