ALAMEDA –- Receiver Brice Butler is in charge of the Raiders’ pre-practice playlist, song selections cranked before a team starts working out in earnest.
It’s typically a hip-hop rotation, with other genres sprinkled through the week. On Thursday afternoon, an Eminem track gave way to a speech from “Any Given Sunday,” a football film where Al Pacino’s head coach character gives a rousing oratory focused on fighting for every inch of ground.
The entire speech played over the loudspeaker, certainly loud enough to be heard through the entire building.
Whether it inspired a better practice or a better performance on Sunday against the San Diego Chargers remains uncertain. Interim head coach Tony Sparano liked Butler’s train of thought.
“I liked the message,” Sparano said. “I like the fact that they’re thinking about the message. I think those things are good.”
Butler, who moonlights as DJ Duffle Bag and had a gig in Oakland last week, kept it a surprise.
“They didn’t know it was coming,” he said. “I felt like the guys got inspired.”
It’s yet another sign that the Raiders remain loose, trying to avoid getting bogged down by an 0-9 start.
“I think it’s great. You can have a team full of glass-half-empties and I think that would provide a terrible, terrible environment at this point,” Sparano said. “Our guys really have a good time with each other. They have a good time with their coaches. There are guys that have good attitudes but understand that when it’s time to walk out on the field, it’s time to work and put in a good day’s work every single day out there.”
Sparano can take credit for that attitude, but today’s Pacino interlude was all Butler.
“I don’t have anything to do with that,” Sparano said. “If I did, we’d be listening to Frank Sinatra.”