Even at the highest level of sports, everyone knows that sometimes people get lucky. You plan for as much as you can, and you train as hard as possible, but luck is always going to be part of sports, and that's part of the fun.
Luck had a lot to do with a catch that Brandon Aiyuk made during the 2024 NFC Championship game. The ball bounced off a defender's helmet before ultimately landing in Brandon's hands. After the game, Brandon was asked about the catch and said that a ladybug had landed on him. Now, many want to understand exactly what Brandon met by that metaphor.
What does it mean when a ladybug lands on you?
Traditionally, and across many societies, a ladybug landing on you has been thought to symbolize good luck. This tradition dates back to the middle ages, and particular to farmers in England who were grateful for the arrival of ladybugs, because they ate off locusts and other parasites that ate crops. As a result, whenever ladybugs showed up, English farmers saw this as a sign of God smiling favorably on them.
Many societies have similar stories, and other superstitions suggest that you should count the number of spots on a ladybug to determine how many years of good luck you're going to have. If a ladybug with no spots lands on you, it's thought to mean that you'll be meeting the love of your life soon. At the most basic level, though, ladybugs are meant to symbolize good luck, or that fortune is smiling on the person who gets landed on.
What did Brandon Aiyuk say about ladybugs?
Many people are confused about ladybugs in large part because of something Brandon Aiyuk said after making a pretty miraculous catch during the NFC Championship game. After quarterback Brock Purdy threw a deep ball to him, the ball bounced off of a defender's helmet and back up into the air, where Brandon was able to make a diving catch for it as he went to the ground. The catch was fortuitous, to say the least.
"Before the game, a ladybug landed on my shoe," Brandon explained after the game. "Y'all know what that means. Other than that, I don't know what I can say. Just great luck. God was with us today."
Even the most skilled players need luck on their side sometimes, and that's exactly what the 49ers seemed to have during the second half of the NFC Championship game.
Following the 49ers's victory, the team will get a rematch of Super Bowl 54 as they take on the Kansas City Chiefs. As Fox's Erin Andrews mentioned to Brandon, he should try to take that ladybug with him to Las Vegas to that game. The Chiefs have been to four of the last five Super Bowls, so the 49ers are going to need all the luck they can get to come out with the win. Maybe they'll get exactly that.