Friday, April 24, 2020

Was the First Person to Publish a Mock Draft a Woman?

By John Turney
Elinor Kaine in the early 1970s   Credit: UPI
Well, the long and the short of it is we don't know. We do know that what are called mock drafts began to appear regularly in newspapers and magazines in the 1980s (Mel Kiper, Paul Zimmerman, Gordon Forbes) but were only occasionally seen in print in the 1970s by people like Joel Buchsbaum and perhaps a couple of others.

However, in 1969, Elinor Kaine, a New York-based syndicated columnist wrote this one in her column "Football and the Single Girl"—

We don't know for sure if it is the first but we do know for sure it is ONE OF the earliest and the earliest we've seen to date while looking for them.

Upon seeing it one Twitter Ms. Penna (her name now) said, "Oh my goodness!  And OJ as well!   What fun—can’t tell you how much fun it is seeing this!"

When asked what the impetus was in penning the column she replied, "Used to go to PJ Clarke's in NYC and a few guys would sit around with me talking about the draft with a few Bloody Marys. The word "mock" was not invented for football fifty years ago, believe me."

Kaine was a pioneer in many ways, you can read more about that HERE and the mock draft may very well be another one of those. We'll let you know when we find out more.


  1. She made good calls on Greene and Marsalis ...

    Interesting her take on scouts view of Greg Cook, though he was AFL ROY ... everybody thought Hendricks was too skinny then.

    Who was this John Shinners guy ?
    Did he have a good career at Guard ?

    1. Shinners was a journeyman....8 years, 3 teams (Balt, NO, Cin) 97 games 36 starts

    2. Thanks Jim ... was cool reading some of her comments about coaches and players, even making fun of the "best athlete available" cliche ...

  2. Team-by-team mock drafts started as early as 1954. Actually 1953, but with contingencies for the bonus pick.

    1. Would love to see some souces in papers...can you cite some. Would be very interesting to read

  3. There were many scouts that didn't think Greg Cook would make it? That's amazing (well, he didn't, but not because of ability).

    Elinor had the Rams getting Cook. If he somehow fell into their lap, and had a long career, they probably don't come up short as much in the 70's (and early-80's as well).