Pizza gets political: The Papa John's vs. Pizza Hut war heats up

  • Pizza gets political: The Papa John's vs. Pizza Hut war heats up

Pizza gets political: The Papa John's vs. Pizza Hut war heats up

Here's a nice saucy slice of conspiracy theory, served up Thursday morning by Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio: "Some blame Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for putting Papa John (Schnatter) up to" saying the NFL's lingering controversy over protests during the national anthem have caused the pizza company's earnings to slide.

Pizza delivery during live sporting events are crucial sales drivers for both pizza chains. "Once the issue is resolved, we're optimistic the NFL's best years are ahead".

President Trump has been critical of NFL players who kneeled during the anthem, and repeatedly called for the league to fire players who participate in the protests.

It is worth noting that while sales during NFL games are important to Wingstop, Papa John's, and Pizza Hut, the three pizza chains all have different relationships with the league.

That's great, except Pizza Hut doesn't have any affiliation with the NFL.

Pizza Hut said the opposite: "We're not seeing any impact from any of that on our business", said Greg Creed, who is CEO of Pizza Hut owner Yum Brands Inc.

While plenty of people piled on to remind Papa John's that its so-called "pizza" is astronomically inferior to other options, others noted that it's not just their product that's doing the brand damage, considering Schnatter is a vocal Trump supporter and has a history of PR nightmares. There was a time when pizza chains were the only ones able to deliver food quickly, but that's changing rapidly, says Gordon, the founder and CEO of Pacific Management Consulting Group. Get the app and get the game. The stock dropped as much as 13 percent the next day.

Later in the day, a spokesman clarified that the [television] spots themselves weren't being pulled [from National Football League games], just the National Football League shield or "official sponsor" designation on those spots.