National Football League sidelined pizza sales? Papa John's says yes, others no

National Football League sidelined pizza sales? Papa John's says yes, others no

NEW YORK (AP) - The CEO of Papa John's slammed the NFL's leadership and blamed protests by football players for pizza sales going cold.

Wall Street reacted negatively to Papa John's latest set of results, with stock in the company plunging by almost nine percent on Wednesday.

Schnatter lost $70 million, which Forbes described as "Papa John Loses Dough", after his company's stock took a dive over bad sales numbers this week. "Leadership starts at the top, and this is an example of poor leadership", Schnatter said.

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The kneeling movement was started past year by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who kneeled to protest what he said was police mistreatment of black males. However, the hundreds of more players started kneeling after President Donald Trump urged team owners to fire players who protest during the anthem.

"The NFL has hurt us and, more importantly, by not resolving the current debacle to the player and owner's satisfaction, NFL leadership has hurt's Papa John's", Schnatter told CNBC. However, others roasted the Papa John's founder for blaming players protesting racial inequality for poor sales, as opposed to acknowledging subpar pizza could have played a role.

If you're familiar with Papa John's, sorry.

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The NFL has declined to comment. Yum Brands posted third-quarter earnings and revenue that beat analyst forecasts, due in part to Pizza Hut's improved performance.

"We're not seeing impact on any of that on our business", Greg Creed, CEO of Pizza Hut's parent company Yum Brands, said in a call with investors on Thursday. "According to executives, that means when people have negative perceptions of the league, this negativity carries over to the pizza chain".

National Football League television ratings have declined 7.5 percent through the first six weeks of the season for multiple reasons, including the hurricanes and uneventful gameplay as well as controversy over player protests, according to an analysis of Papa John's last week by the financial services firm BTIG.

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