ESPN’s Kellerman Highlights Racism of Chess in SF 49ers QB Controversy — ‘Go Figure’ Black Pieces ‘Always Go Second’

During a Monday debate on the San Francisco 49ers quarterback controversy, outgoing ESPN “First Take” co-host Max Kellerman pointed out the racism behind the centuries-old board game of chess.

Currently, the 49ers have veteran Jimmy Garappolo, who is white, splitting time under center with rookie first-round pick Trey Lance, who is mixed black and white. The current plan, based off the team’s preseason gameplan, appears to be the two quarterbacks rotating.

Kellerman questioned the innovation behind a multiple quarterback system when the 49ers, on paper, have one of the better teams in the league. He noted the black pieces in chess are always behind the white pieces, meaning the black pieces have to be more innovative because they’re always behind.

“I’m not saying it can’t work. You can innovate, but this ain’t the way it’s always been done,” Kellerman said. “And I think you take a risk by innovating, not if you’re in a position where you don’t have the horses, right? You’ve got to do something. You’ve got to have an asymmetrical kind of strategy. Like, if you play chess, and you’re the black pieces – which always go second. Go figure, right? If you just do the theoretically strongest move every time, you’re always a step behind the white pieces who start first, so you’ve got to do something asymmetrical.”

“But I look at San Francisco’s roster, and I’m thinking this is a Super Bowl roster. Like, be careful what you do,” he cautioned.

Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent


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