Sean Payton bringing interesting OL tendencies to Denver Broncos

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2. Payton's willingness to go with unproven backups

Having homegrown talent on the offensive line has seemingly always been part of Sean Payton's DNA as a head coach, which isn't surprising at all. When you consider that Payton is a branch of the Bill Parcells coaching tree, it's no secret that building in the trenches has always been a priority, but the Saints didn't seem to really scoff at former undrafted guys, late-round guys, or players they acquired by others means when you look at the reserves on the offensive line.

What really tipped me off to this was the fact that in 2021, when the Saints were a nine-win team, their offensive line dealt with some injuries and the top backups made it into the lineup at some point or another. Players like former UDFAs Calvin Throckmorton and James Hurst were the primary reserves for Payton along with 2021 sixth-round pick Landon Young.

A lot of people seem to have concerns right now about the Denver Broncos' reserve offensive linemen, which is understandable. Projecting the top backups right now is tough because there's not much experience there. But perhaps Payton's history should give us at least a bit of comfort.

At least guys like Isaiah Prince, Luke Wattenberg, and Alex Forsyth were drafted.

In 2020, the Saints kept four reserve offensive linemen, three of which were 2019 college free agents. In 2019, his top backups included seventh-round pick Will Clapp, a rookie free agent, a street free agent, and the most notable name -- Nick Easton.

Now, this is obviously all about Payton being okay putting faith in his backups as undrafted guys, late-round guys, former street free agents, or lower-priced veterans. But what about the starting lineup?