Slam Shady vs. Alabama Leprechaun: Best Times To Use Each Lure


It’s no surprise that we love using the Alabama Leprechaun jerk shad and the Slam Shady paddletail.

They’re our two custom soft plastic lures that we designed based on feedback from thousands of anglers, scientific research, and tons of real-life testing on the water.

And we’re always recommending them both because they work really well.

But here’s a question we get a lot:

When should I use the Slam Shady and when should I use the Alabama Leprechaun?

That’s a great question because there are some times when we definitely recommend using one over the other and in this video, I’m going to show you exactly when those times are.

You’ll also learn the two best ways to rig these lures, and when you should choose one over the other.

Check out the video below.

Slam Shady vs. Alabama Leprechaun [VIDEO]

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When To Use The Alabama Leprechaun

The Alabama Leprechaun is a 5″ jerk shad that’s a watermelon color with red and gold flakes.

It’s best for clear, shallow water (3′ or less) and when you’re sight fishing.

This is because this lure is a finesse bait.

In these conditions, the fish are hunting by sight, so you want a subtle lure that’s going to dart through the water and generate a reaction strike.

The split tail doesn’t create that much vibration in the water and the gold and red flakes create just enough flash to catch a fish’s attention without spooking it off (like a hot pink or chartreuse lure would in clear water).

When To Use The Slam Shady

The Slam Shady 2.0 is a 3.5″ paddletail that’s white with silver and gold flakes.

It’s a very versatile lure, but is best when fish are relying on other senses more than their sight.

This includes in darker or choppy water.

This is because fish are feeding by smell and feel in this situation, and the paddletail gives off vibration that lets the fish feel where it is.

It can also be effective in clear water, but I prefer to fish during low light conditions (dawn, dusk, or overcast) when I’m using the Slam Shady in clear water.

How To Rig The Slam Shady & Alabama Leprechaun

How to rig these two lures is based on depth and current.

In water 4′ or more, I typically rig them both on a 3/0 1/8 oz. Owner TwistLock hook.

I like the 1/16 oz. version of this hook too, but I’ve found the 1/8 oz. version is more versatile and I can cast it farther.

If you’re fishing in shallow water, keep the rod tip up to bounce it off of the bottom, and if you’re fishing in deeper water, just keep the rod tip down to make the lure stay closer to the bottom.

Now, if you’re fishing in water deeper than 4′, or there’s a really strong current, then I would go with a jig head.

You can choose a heavier jig head, which will help your lure get to the bottom quicker, and since jig heads are weighted in the front, the lure dives straight down and gets to the bottom more effectively.


fat snook under dock

If you’re fishing in clear, calm, shallow water, where fish are hunting by sight, go with the Alabama Leprechaun.

But if you’re fishing in darker water where fish are hunting by feeling vibration in the water, then go with the Slam Shady.

You can get these lures and hooks from our shop here:

Have any questions about using these two lures?

Let us know down in the comments!

And if you know someone who wants to catch more fish with these two lures, please TAG or SHARE this with them!

P.S. Want access to our best fishing spots and tips, plus discounts to our online tackle store (where we sell these jig heads)? Click here to join us in the Insider Club!

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9 months ago

☆ Thank you for clarification on when and how these softies work best Tony!

Last edited 9 months ago by Chad Craig
Greg Zak
1 year ago

Tony, great tips. I tend to use jig heads most of the time. I think I could be missing some fish because of the weight size. I’m going to start paying more attention to the current to use either the jig head or the owner twist hook depending upon the conditions not withstanding the depth. Bad habits are hard to break sometimes. Really appreciate the insight into both of the hooks for each bait.

Richard Fiorentino
1 year ago

For years we have been hearing 1/16 weighted hook is the way ti go in shallow water. Now you sat 1/8 . Why the change?

1 year ago

The only reason is to cast farther & cover more ground Lighter weight is more finesse

Giomar Jaramillo
1 year ago

What are your thoughts on the 7inch diesel minnow?

Jim Ortenzio
1 year ago

Whats the retrieve on the Alabama Leprechaun rig?

Luke Simonds
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Ortenzio

Here’s a post that shows everything you need to know for retrieving and rigging Alabama Leprechaun lures to maximize your results:

1 year ago

I got a free pack of the slam shady back in early spring. The only thing I can say is 9 out of 10 specks I’ve caught has been on this paddle tail

1 year ago

Hey guys, thanks for all the info. Just wish covid hadn’t hit , was really looking forward to coming down and trying it out. Maybe next year. Keep it up. Perry, from Kentucky.

Last edited 1 year ago by Anonymous
Brandon Evans
1 year ago

Ive had better luck with the slam shady in all water condition. Trout and reds love them!

Clay Smith
1 year ago

Lately the water in my area has been a muddy red and choppy. Slam shady on a chartreuse jig head in 3 feet of water has been slaying slot redfish and trout.

Last edited 1 year ago by Clay Smith


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