As the analytics movement spreads throughout football, new stats are popping up in droves. There’s DVOA, ANY/A, CPOE, EPA, QBR, and many more. Some starts are good. Some are useful. Some are sad. Some are pointless.
This is about one of the pointless ones.
Well, not pointless, per se. There are eight points involved in this stat. That’s why it’s called the octopus.
Invented by Sports Illustrated’s Mitch Goldich last year, an octopus occurs when a player scores a touchdown and also converts a two-point conversion on the same drive, resulting in eight points. Or, rather, an octopus.
And here’s the most fun part: no team has recorded more octopi than the Packers.
An octopus has only been possible since 1994, when the NFL introduced the two-point conversion. Since then, the Packers have recorded 11, two more than the second-place Rams. Davante Adams bagged the most recent octopus when Aaron Rodgers found him on the two-point conversion following Adams’ third-quarter touchdown against the 49ers in Week 12.
Adams is one of two Packers players with two octopi to his name, along with Randall Cobb. The other seven octopi belong to Mark Chmura, Corey Bradford (who also got one for the Texans!), Ruvell Martin, Greg Jennings, James Jones, Richard Rodgers, and Aaron Rodgers. Aaron Rodgers also holds the distinction of being the only Packers player to grab an octopus as a runner; all the others came on receptions.
Does any of this matter at all? No, not really. But football is a game, and games are supposed to be fun. Adding another goofy little stat to the mix increases the fun factor just a little bit (for me, anyway).