by Mike Gerry
As we move to more offshore summertime fishing one of the oldest, most successful baits is the forever fished football jig. Make no mistake about it, this bait has been around for many years, but it held its own through those years of changes, and use, on lakes all over the country. A football jig gets to the bottom quickly and as we see the bass move more offshore in the heat of the summer and to the deeper edges a football jig has been one of the most successful baits that have withstood the test of time. It is a bait that can be crawled along the bottom where many of the fish feed in the intense heat of summertime fishing.
Football jigs have a great profile and resemble crawfish at every movement when you crawl it along the bottom. It can be presented in many ways that help it resemble the crawfish; you can hop it, stroke it, drag it, and even swim it on the bottom, giving you many ways to present it to the fish and get a bite. Profile is everything and letting it work for you with these different techniques and depth range make it an especially important fish catching bait in the heat of the summer.
Color is probably not as important as presentation, keep it simple, use good combinations of greens, blues, browns, and some flash to get it noticed. Do not over-think the colors, match the color of the water and match the size of the bait with the size of the crawfish. Let the profile of the bait work for you.
Trailers are probably more important than color as a trailer profile just adds to the baits awareness as you move it along the bottom. The size of the football jig head can also be key, normal lead head size from ½ to ¾ oz. is about all I use but if you flip a lot, tungsten football jigs can help you drop into the grassy areas a little easier. It is, however, not easy to work any football jig in heavy grass but if you are flipping the edge of a river channel where the grass is scattered and not thick it is an excellent choice.