Evaluating every play since 2016 to learn about one of Sean Payton’s favorite passing concepts

Sean Payton opened the curtain and showed us a few pages of his playbook.

The Saints coach, who has been quarantined inside his home after catching the coronavirus, got active on Twitter Sunday night, jumping into a thread that asked coaches to share their favorite passing concepts from empty backfield looks. In reply, Payton posted a drawing of a play called "52 All Go Special X Shallow Cross." He captioned the photo by explaining that the alignment is called "gun empty right Quizno," and added that the purpose of the play is to hit one of the four vertical routes or find Michael Thomas underneath on a crossing route.

Payton also revealed the Saints' tighter splits (how the receivers align) are all named after sandwiches. Along with Quizno, the team has ones called JJ (Jimmy John's), club and stack. Payton shared drawings of two other plays from empty looks, but NewOrleans.Football decided to zero in on "52 All Go Special X Shallow Cross" and learn more about it since he started with that one.

How often does Payton use the play?

How effective is it when called?

When did it become a big part of the offense, or was it always there?

We analyzed every offensive play since 2016 to try and answer these questions.

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