Peppermill Las Vegas — The Strip — 10:45pm
Clasping a rolled up paper in his hand, VONTAZE BURFICT enters the establishment and is quickly escorted to a seat at the bar. The hostess offers him one of their house special bloody mary drinks and he agrees. She steps away to retrieve his cocktail and, now seated alone, BURFICT unrolls the paper and begins to read.
VONTAZE BURFICT: Well this is interesting indeed. It seems part of my contract agreement with the Raiders was to participate in the team’s Veterans Mentorship Program, where new Raiders are brought on to be taught what it means to live and play The Raider Way and best represent the silver and black in the community. Well, I am new to the team but I know Oakland jumped at the opportunity to sign me because they know I bring the kind of competitiveness Coach Gruden adores. Still, after incurring over $4.1 million in fines and lost wages due to some boneheaded decisions, I do hope to instill on these young bucks that I did not necessarily do everything right. Yessir, I’ll raise this bloody mary to my future with the Raiders.
— DOOR FLIES OPEN–
DEREK CARR: Greetings, young grasshopper! And praise His name that you arrived here safely. Praise Him! Yes, let us praise Him, indeed!
BURFICT: D.C.? What have they got you doing here? Oh, I get it. With three first round picks, guess the team thought I could use some help mentoring those kids.
CARR: Friend, I’m here as the mentor for the Veteran’s Mentorship Program.
BURFICT: Yeah. Me too. It’s right here in my contract, see? Mandatory complete participation in the Veterans Mentorship Program. Then I got the text to be here to meet up for my introduction. I even outlined a bit of a syllabus I want to present to Johnathon Abram. If he’s going to play in my defense, he’s gotta work on wrapping up runners because you’ll just bounce off some of these NFL guys if you don’t get your arms around them.
CARR: Oh boy. Goodness, you don’t understand. Lord, please grant me the patience and understanding to communicate with Brother Vontaze about this. You see, Vontaze, I am your mentor. You’re thinking of the Rookie Mentorship Program but, actually, I am going to be working with you to guide you through what it means to be a part of Raider Nation. The clause was included with your contract because of your history on the Bengals.
BURFICT: What? I’ve been in this league nearly a decade and I now have a mentor? Are you kidding me?
CARR: Only technically. I mean, sure, I’ll be responsible for filling out the paperwork confirming your complete participation in the program. But I actually have bigger plans for you. With the team moving here to Las Vegas next season, I thought this would be an excellent opportunity for you to work with me as a kind of scouting party that will serve as ambassadors to the Las Vegas community and let them know that we’re going to be here to make their hometown better. Praise him!
BURFICT: I signed a one-year deal. I might not be here when they leave Oakland.
CARR: Once a Raider, always a Raider, Brother Vontaze.
BURFICT: God damn man. I’m gonna need something a lot stronger than this then.
CARR: Now now, Brother, let us not use His name in vain. And is that not just tomato juice with a celery stick? I’m afraid there is no drinking or drug use while your are under my veteran mentorship.
— DOOR FLIES OPEN–
ANTONIO BROWN: So I’ll be taking that bloody mary then.
BURFICT: AB? They’re making you do this too?
BROWN: Ah hell no, man. Boy Wonder would have given me more shares than Gruden if his accountants hadn’t stepped in. You think they’re making me do anything? Nah, I’m here voluntarily because I believe in David’s mission and support his vision to turn Sin City into Sin-Free City. Figured he’s gonna need my help to make sure you don’t turn it into Cincinnati.
CARR: Oh yeah! I forgot you both used to play each other from opposing AFC North squads. Well praise be! The Lord does work in mysterious ways. Why don’t you two catch up a bit while I go tinkle?
BURFICT and BROWN are silent as they watch CARR cross the dining room to the restrooms. When he leaves their view, BROWN slides onto CARR’s now-vacant stool.
BURFICT: Believe this, man? I gotta make however many visits here to Vegas with Godboy and no drinking.
BROWN: Or drugs. Or strip clubs. And on Fridays — and there will be Fridays — it’s no red meat.
BURFICT: I thought you weren’t in this thing.
BROWN: I’m not. But in my week with the organization, before they signed you, I lobbied hard for players with…let’s say, reputations…such as yours would require such a program. And wouldn’t you know it; Mr Carr here was ready to take the project on aggressively.
BURFICT: YOU DID THIS?! Why the hell would you do this to me?
BROWN: Yeah weird. I guess I don’t have idea why I might have suggested a no caffeine clause as a part of this program too considering — OH WAIT! MAYBE I DO KNOW WHY!
BURFICT: No caffeine!? Seriously? You’re going to be such a vengeful little bi–
CARR [from behind, slapping BURFICT on the shoulder]: You boys done catching up? Because we have some homeless feet to clean and public bathrooms to freshen up and install needle disposals in. Did you know Las Vegas spends more on gambling advertising than helping the homeless? We have much to do here.
BROWN: Ooooh, can’t make it this time buddy. Wish I could because it sounds like important work. Maybe Brother Vontaze can pick up the slack?
CARR: Oh I am absolutely sure he will! Praise His name, we will do all we can to help Las Vegas before our franchise moves here.
BURFICT: Uh, David, can’t we get some of the rookies here to do this work? I’m sure I could oversee production from a spot at one of downtown’s hottest showgirls clubs.
CARR: Oh Brother Vontaze, I was warned that you had a sense of humor but no one told me you were a regular King Jeroham! Praise be! We will be joined by the rookies soon enough but let us first set the bar by the grace and hard work of our own hands.
BROWN: That sounds exciting. Hope it goes well, guys. I need to get in some sleep if I’m going to be making by table at the MGM tonight. Oh, DC! How about you show Vontaze where you two will be spending tonight.
CARR: Well, it was going to be a surprise but — oh, why not?! I need to pay our tab right quick and, then, Brother Vontaze, we will be having an all-nighter of own this evening!
BROWN: This is just the beginning, pal. You slip up even once and I’m gonna be there to sink your entire contract because of this. Enjoy.