This is one of the most effective lures for locating and targeting smallmouth—and just about any other predatory fish. A simple paddletail swimbait on a jighead produces a beautiful action all on its own, making it super easy to fish.
Possibly the greatest value of this rig is its ability to cover a lot of water quickly and efficiently as you try to decode where the fish are congregating. That’s assisted by a longer rod to make longer casts. I’m using a 7-foot 2-inch medium-action spinning rod in this video loaded with low-stretch braid to a flouro leader.
You might think that you can just jab this bait on the jighead, but you'd be wrong. Line up your incision to be perfectly straight and compare the shank length to the bait in order that the hook emerges at the right spot and the plastic doesn’t get bent. Do it wrong and your rig will spin and look like garbage. A great hack I recently shared on the Bent Podcast involves dabbing some Zap-a-Gap glue on the hook shank right before threading on the plastic so that tail-grabbers don’t yank it off. Works like a charm.