Papa John's CEO: NFL Protests Hurting Sales

Cris Carter

Papa John's founder and CEO John Schnatter stated during a national conference call to investors that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is the chief culprit and stated, "Leadership starts at the top and this is an example of poor leadership".

But Schnatter also said the company is working with the league and is "optimistic" that the partnership will remain valuable in the long run.

As of Wednesday, Papa John's stock is down 8.5%. But the Cowboys connection might be the most prominent. The services deliver food from any restaurant and even convenience stores, so there are more options for home delivery these days and maybe people want something better than Papa John's pizza or just want a change and have McDonald's delivered to the house while they continue to watch the National Football League games.

"The NFL has hurt us and, more importantly, by not resolving the current debacle to the [players' and owners'] satisfaction, NFL leadership has hurt Papa John's", Mr. Schnatter said.

After Schnatter's remarks, people on Twitter put Papa John's pizza on blast.

In addition, while President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are pushing a narrative that NFL players who kneel are anti-American, a HuffPost/YouGov survey from September shows that 48 percent of Americans say NFL players are kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality.

He added that he thought the kneeling anthem protests had been "nipped in the bud" 18 months ago after Colin Kaepernick started the trend.

Papa John's is taking multiple L's, and is still canceled.

Papa John's, oddly enough, hasn't addressed that. While Schnatter is indeed a Republican who can not stand the idea of paying his employees a living wage and providing them with health insurance, obviously the only thing he really cares about is getting as many people as possible to scarf down his soggy, pizza-like product. Schnatter, who founded the company in 1984, donated to Trump's campaign and has railed against government regulations. People are assuming he will praise Papa John's CEO.

And for some, boycotting the pizza chain will be easy.

Some East Coasters questioned Papa John's in general. In response, many Texans players took a knee during "The Star-Spangled Banner" last weekend.

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