Rams’ Todd Gurley is the only NFL player with 3 ‘octopi’ in a season
Sports Illustrated has coined the term “octopus” for when a player who scores a two-point conversion is also the one who scored the preceding touchdown.
Two players are tied with three octopi each: Randy Moss and Todd Gurley. In fact, Gurley had all three of his this season, and two of them came in the same game. When Los Angeles Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein injured himself during pregame warmups of their Week 2 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals, Gurley scored the two subsequent two-point conversions after his touchdowns. He added another in Week 8 against the Packers, becoming the first player ever with three octopi in one season.
According to Pro Football Reference, there have been 988 successful two-point conversions in the last 25 years. On 140 of those occasions—about 14.2 percent—the conversion was scored by the same player who scored the touchdown. Passing touchdowns, however, do not count, Aaron Rodgers gets credit for an octopus thanks to his rushing touchdown and subsequent rushing conversion in Green Bay’s overtime win against the Jets in Week 16 last season, but he would not get credit for one had either of those Packers trips to the end zone been a result of him throwing a touchdown to somebody else.
In recent years, teams have become more aggressive, as 2018 saw a record 15 octopi. If head coach Sean McVay continues to coach as he has, there’s a good chance Gurley separates himself from the pack next year.
However, while there are several active players with two octopi, two seem most likely to challenge LA’s running back for the crown: Antonio Brown and Alvin Kamara. Both could easily catch Todd Gurley, especially if he continues to be slowed by the reported arthritis in his left knee, which limited him during the playoffs.