Old school, anchor, chum and drift baits back. Try it.
The best generic advice I can give is smaller lb test flouro leaders longer (6'+) , smaller hooks and different bait. Yes frozen squid is my favorite bait but some days the fish don't want squid, they want pinfish or cigar minnows or pinfish or bonita chunks. I always have 2-3 types of frozen bait and live bait when I leave the pass. The stuff the fish don't care about is used for chum. Move around to different spots and fish the whole water column. One day we struggled to catch red snapper on the bottom, we were ready to head home, threw out some trolling rigs to make a pass over the wreck and head home and we had a quadruple hookup and landed 3 red snapper. Deepest plug was a stretch maybe 20' down. Bottom fish aren't always on the bottom!I'm admittedly not a fisherman and do more spearfishing...totally different game, BUT I've found that ability to stay on a spot has been a factor for us lately.
Case 1 - 4 guys, public numbers, only frozen squid for bait, outboard w/ no trolling motor. We limited out
Case 2 - 3 guys, same public numbers, frozen squid, some live bait, larger boat w/ inboard one week later. Caught 1 fish.
I'm thinking that my ability to stay backed into a spot w/ an outboard was a key factor. We had better luck when we could stay on the spot rather than drifting across the spot over & over. Sorry to hijack the conversation but I'd be interested in learning what most folks are doing in terms of drifting and or holding over a spot or not and most of all what the best boat technique is when targeting snapper.
Peace Marvel is a guide at Venice, LA. We were talking with him at the dock when he came by and we were cleaning fish many years ago. He offered a number of tips, such as lighter leaders, less weight, braid, and sensitive rods. He also said that big snapper suspend up in the water column, and often up-current from rigs and down-current of bottom structure. His idea on the hunk of Bonito was that the smaller fish would nibble on it, and the bigger snapper would respond by inhaling it. He recommended circle hooks years before they were required so folks would not keep trying to set the hook when the smaller fish were chewing, and would only react when the rod tip was headed to the bottom.I have never caught a snapper that big, Glad you guys got hooked up on some big ones!!!