Football jigs are one of the best bass catchers of all time when it comes to slow-crawling a craw imitator along the bottom. From 3 feet to 30 and everywhere in between, football jigs have hauled countless bass out of waters throughout the country and beyond.
Today, we’re going to take a closer look at one such jig, the Freedom Tackle FT Football Jig.
The one thing all football jigs have in common is their namesake head design, which is obviously shaped like a football. With only a little leeway in this regard, Freedom Tackle kept this jig true to the genre, while adding a little ribbing to the underside of the jig for increased sensitivity and sound. Now, instead of having a simple and smooth head being dragged across the bottom, the ribs rub across small pebbles, gravel and bigger rock.
An important, albeit subtle component of any football jig design is the positioning and orientation of the line tie eye. In order to prevent damage to your fishing line, the eye needs to be elevated up and away from oncoming obstructions. But, you want to maintain bottom contact with your jig as much as possible as well, so the line tie can’t just be mounted on the very top of the head. Freedom Tackle found the happy medium here.
Freedom Tackle incorporated a 50-strand silicone skirt with a particularly durable collar into the design of the FT Football JIg. One of the weak points of many jigs, the simple collars made of cheap rubber band-type material often deteriorate, leaving your skirt in a pile near the naked jighead the next time you reach for it. That’s not the case with this jig, as the heavy-duty collar will last for a long time. Additionally, there are two rattle holders built into the skirt’s collar, if you’d like to add rattles (rattles not included).
The FT Football Jig has one of the most impressive and secure soft-plastic trailer keepers of any jig on the market. Many jigs use one big molded barb, which can tear soft-plastic trailers. To skirt this issue, Freedom Tackle went with two forward-facing and two rear-facing smaller barbs. These barbs are particularly effective at holding baits in place and this design allows them to enter into a bait without damaging it.
Finesse football jig
Freedom Tackle used a thin-wire, ultra-sharp hook that will easily hook fish in deep water without requiring an explosive hookset or high-pound test line. The weedguard also has a moderate stiffness. These two come together to make this more of a finesse football jig as compared to many of the heavier duty jigs with massive hooks and stiff weedguards.
Attention to detail
Some of the finer details we’ve already mentioned, like the beefed-up bait keeper and upgraded skirt collar, prove the design team at Freedom Tackle built this bait with a lot of input from anglers. But one other neat and useful detail is that the weight of each jig is printed on the head near the collar of the bait. It’s very frustrating when you finally find the perfect jig and don’t know if it was a 3/8- or 1/2-ounce when you go to restock. This is no longer an issue.
The Freedom Tackle FT Football Jig is a well-built and revolutionary take on the traditional football jig. With a beefed-up skirt collar, unique soft-plastic trailer keeper and weight markings on the head of each jig, the FT Football Jig stands out from others in the genre.
The thin-wire hook and moderate stiffness of the weedguard also make this a great option if you’re looking for a football jig that’s a little more on the finesse side, to be used with lighter line in clearer water. Available in 3/8-, 1/2- and 3/4-ounce sizes, this is a bait worth giving a shot.