The Giants made their first playoff appearance in five years last season. They were promptly blown out, 38-13, by the Packers in the Wild-Card round.

Yet the overriding message after the organization's brass assessed the rubble from a 1-6 start during last week's bye is that the players bought into their own hype too much.

"We were humbled, obviously, the first half of the year, coach Ben McAdoo said after a brief practice on Monday. "We talked to the players about the first half before we left. We were obviously humbled. One thing I wanted them to keep in mind is, 'Don't forget how badly you once wanted what you now have.' It's a blessing to be here and to work with these guys each and every day."

Giants general manager Jerry Reese started the spin about players losing their hunger during his press conference last Tuesday. It seemed like a convenient, nebulous excuse that redirected scrutiny from the shortcomings of the front office and coaching staff.

McAdoo toed the company line on Monday.