Interview: Matt Forte thrilled Tyga mentioned him in rap song

Matt Forte

The Bears' Matt Forte joins Duracell Oct. 1, 2013 to donate Quantum batteries to the Chicago Fire Department at McCormick Place. (Photo by Barry Brecheisin)

You can’t blame the Bears’ Matt Forte for having a moment when rapper Tyga mentioned his name on the 2011 remix to Drake’s “The Motto.”

Forte had never heard his name on a rap song before, let alone one from the Young Money Entertainment record label that originated in his home state of Louisiana. To him, Tyga’s explicit verse, in which he references the running back when speaking about a woman “running back” to him, was a sign that he had arrived.

“I was like ‘Wow, I’m on a rap song,’” said Forte Tuesday while appearing at McCormick Place on behalf of Duracell, which donated cases of Quantum batteries to the Chicago Fire Department. “You know, I had a little moment. My boys were like ‘Oh, you done made it now.’ You always hear LeBron James, (Dwyane Wade) and (Michael) Jordan. This was my first time. To be mentioned in a song is pretty cool.”

Still, Forte admitted he wasn’t sure why exactly Tyga, a Compton, Calif., native, picked him of all running backs.

“I don’t know,” Forte said. “At that point, I lead the league in yards. Maybe he’s a big football fan and was watching. He’s also part of Young Money, which is from Louisiana. I’m from Louisiana. Maybe that’s it.”

According to Tyga, it was a matter of right place, right time.

“I usually just have ESPN on all the screens when I’m in the studio,” Tyga said by email Thursday. “One of (Forte’s) highlights came on ‘SportsCenter’ while I was recording my verse. He was putting in work on the field, so I threw that reference in.”

The song isn’t Forte’s first brush with the entertainment industry. He played himself in 2011 on “The League,” which now airs on FXX, and this year in The Onion-produced comedy web series “Tough Season.”

“(Acting) is something I’m interested in,” Forte said. “Most of the stuff I’ve done is comedy. I like to do funny stuff like that. It’s a lot harder than it looks, but it helps when you have funny guys around you bringing it out.”

What did Forte think of teammate Jay Cutler’s recent cameo on “The League”?

“It was pretty good,” Forte said. “Whoever wrote that part deserves credit for that. It was a pretty smart, witty episode.”

lgomez@tribune.com | Twitter @TribLuis

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