I kind of waffled back and forth about including the Norman Fat Boy on this list. While it certainly doesn’t get enough love out there, it’s also one of my favorite shallow-water plugs and I wasn’t really willing to let the cat out of the bag. But I realized that I had already written a review on it back in 2019 so I guess I already gave up the goods.
This is a small squarebill, measuring only 2 inches long and it dives from 0 to 4 feet. This is perfect for a myriad of situations and if you high-stick your rod throughout the retrieve, it’s a killer wakebait. If you put your rod tip closer to the water, it’ll sometimes hit 5 feet on a long cast. Either way, this little plug is a bulldog and comes through thick cover without any issues whatsoever. Its wide body and blunt nose also displace a lot of water which makes it one of my favorite muddy-water crankbaits. Even if the bass can’t see it, they’ll be able to feel it with their lateral line and track it down.
I think this crankbait is eerily similar to the hugely popular Zoom WEC crankbaits. After the passing of Ed Chambers, the creator of the WEC, his plugs go for at least $50 if you’re lucky to find ’em that cheap. When it comes to mass-produced crankbaits, I think you’d have a mighty hard time finding another plug that mirrors a WEC so closely.