No team has ever played the Super Bowl in their home stadium, but two teams have a chance to change that during the 2013 season.
Wide receiver Stephen Hill is one of the few people willing to publicly admit they think the Jets can be one of the teams that qualify for a playoff berth, let alone a berth in the big game at MetLife Stadium in February, but it won’t be as hard to find people who think the Giants can make it to their third Super Bowl under coach Tom Coughlin. Cornerback Aaron Ross says that he’s seen the hunger for a Super Bowl trip from his teammates and that coach Tom Coughlin has been using the location of the Super Bowl to help push the team this offseason.
“I do feel that, especially since I came back after being away,” Ross said, via Bob Glauber of Newsday. “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. We’ve talked about it, and it’s another goal that coach Coughlin put in front of us. Guys are hungry to achieve that goal.”
The Giants didn’t make the playoffs last year, the third time in the last four years that they failed to advance to the postseason despite spending a good portion of the year in position to grab one of the six NFC spots. That fourth year ended with a Super Bowl, of course. This year’s Giants team is built the same way as those teams, leaving that full range of outcomes on the table as they make their way to camp.
Ross wasn’t with the Giants last year as he signed with the Jaguars as a free agent and played an unremarkable season in Jacksonville before getting cut and returning to the Giants, but said he thought there may have been some complacency around the Giants during their title defense. There’s no such excuse available this season, especially with the added motivation of making a bit of NFL history at the end of the season.