What is an Octopus in Football?

An octopus is a rare type of scoring sequence in American football that occurs when a player scores a touchdown and immediately follows it up with a successful two-point conversion. This results in a total of eight points on a single play, which is significantly more than the usual seven points for a touchdown and extra point.

While the vast majority of touchdowns in American football are followed up with a one-point conversion attempt, there have been several instances in NFL history where an octopus has occurred. In fact, an ‘Octopus’ can be a valuable and exciting proposition bet for those interested in NFL betting.

what is an octopus in football betting

One of the most memorable examples of an octopus occurred in a game between the Carolina Panthers and New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVIII. In that game, Patriots’ running back Kevin Faulk scored a two-point conversion run from direct snap after a touchdown on a one-yard pass from Tom Brady to Mike Vrabel, resulting in a total of eight points on the play. This example highlights the rare and unpredictable nature of an octopus, making it an intriguing option for prop bets.

Where Did the Term Octopus Come From?

The term octopus in American football, which refers to a touchdown followed by a two-point conversion, was popularized by sports writer Mitch Goldich in 2019. Goldich came up with the term in a tweet on September 15, 2019, during a game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Arizona Cardinals. This was the game where Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson scored a touchdown and immediately followed it up with a two-point conversion, prompting Goldich to describe the play as an octopus.

Following Goldich’s tweet, the term octopus quickly went viral, with many fans and media outlets using it to describe similar scoring plays throughout the remainder of the season. While the term is not widely recognized in American football circles, it has become a popular topic of discussion among fans and analysts who are interested in unique and memorable scoring plays.

It’s worth noting that while Goldich is credited with popularizing octopus, it’s unclear whether he was the first person to coin the term. However, regardless of its origins, the term has become popular and is often used in sports betting circles as a proposition bet.

How Often Does an Octopus Happen in Football?

The octopus is a rare and elusive phenomenon in American football. Since the introduction of the two-point conversion in 1994, there have only been 175 documented instances of a player achieving an octopus by scoring a touchdown and successfully following it up with a two-point conversion. As such, it’s safe to say that the occurrence of an octopus is quite rare in the world of American football.

Out of the hundreds of thousands of touchdowns scored since 1994, only a select few have resulted in an octopus. The rarity of this feat is what makes it such a memorable and impressive accomplishment, with only a handful of players having ever achieved it. In fact, an octopus has only occurred once in the history of the Super Bowl, adding to its intrigue.

The difficulty of achieving an octopus has made it a highly sought-after and coveted accomplishment in the world of American football, which adds prestige to any player’s career stats. With so few instances of this rare scoring sequence, an octopus is truly a unique and memorable moment in the sport.

Can you Bet on an Octopus in the NFL?

An octopus is relatively rare in American football and, as a result, betting on it occurring can provide a significant payout for those who correctly predict it.

Betting on an octopus usually involves placing a prop bet, which is a type of wager that is not directly related to the final outcome of the game. Prop bets can be based on a wide range of events that occur during a game, including individual player performances, specific plays, and even the halftime show.

For example, a sportsbook may offer an octopus prop bet for a particular game, with odds of +1200. This means that if a bettor wagers $100 on an octopus and the play occurs, they would win $1200 in addition to their initial bet.

It’s worth noting that prop bets are generally considered riskier than traditional bets, as they are often based on events that are more difficult to predict. However, for those who are knowledgeable about the sport and willing to take on more risk, prop bets can be an exciting way to add some extra excitement to a game.

betus octopus betting

What Are the Odds on an Octopus?

The odds of being successful with a prop bet related to an octopus play or a similar type of bet that involves a specific player scoring a touchdown and a two-point conversion in the same game will depend on a variety of factors, including the specific player, the team they are playing against, and the current odds offered by the sportsbook or bookmaker.

Attaining the elusive octopus achievement in American football is a rare feat, with only 175 documented occurrences since the introduction of the two-point conversion to the NFL in 1994. With each NFL season consisting of 272 games, basic calculations suggest that the probability of an octopus occurring in any given game is approximately 2%. This rarity of the octopus phenomenon underscores the challenges of predicting and betting on specific outcomes in sports and highlights the unique nature of this remarkable accomplishment in the world of American football.

Prop bets are often more difficult to win than traditional bets because they require a more specific outcome. This means that the odds for a prop bet may be longer than the odds for a traditional bet, as there are more variables involved.

Strategies for Betting on the Octopus

Although betting on an octopus taking place is difficult due to its rarity, there are still some ways that you can slightly shift the odds in your favor. Here are three strategies for betting on an octopus.

  • Analyze Player Statistics – By studying player stats, you can examine a player’s past performance, their scoring history, and their success rate for two-point conversions to determine their likelihood of achieving an ‘Octopus’. This information can help bettors make informed decisions when placing bets on the occurrence of this rare phenomenon. A good place to start would be to check which players are career leaders in two-point conversions.
  • Compare Playing Styles – Some teams have a more aggressive offensive strategy, while others may have a stronger defense, which can affect a player’s chances of scoring a touchdown and two-point conversion. By analyzing team matchups and playing styles, bettors can identify opportunities for an octopus play and adjust their betting strategy accordingly.
  • Monitor Betting Trends – If you don’t want to do the work yourself, why not let others do it for you? By keeping an eye on the latest trends, odds changes and tips in the betting industry, you can identify when other people are betting on an octopus and follow suit yourself.


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Mike Austin
Sports Editor

Micheal Austin is a professional writer and an extensive researcher of gambling legislation. He has vast experience writing about sport and casino. He has contributed to a wide range of gambling sites and news outlets, including August Free Press, Business2Community, Sports Lens, Sports Talk Philly and The Sports Daily.

All posts by Mike Austin
Author photo
Mike Austin Sports Editor

Micheal Austin is a professional writer and an extensive researcher of gambling legislation. He has vast experience writing about sport and casino. He has contributed to a wide range of gambling sites and news outlets, including August Free Press, Business2Community, Sports Lens, Sports Talk Philly and The Sports Daily.

All posts by Mike Austin