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Chad's Morning Brief: Papa John's Slams NFL Over National Anthem Protests

Chad's Morning Brief: Papa John's Slams NFL Over National Anthem Protests”

Papa John's International Inc. founder John Schnatter is going after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, saying weak handling of the league's national-anthem controversy has hammered sales of his pizza.

"Leadership starts at the top, and this is an example of poor leadership", Schnatter said.

On Wednesday, the CEO of Papa John's blamed a decline in earnings on a decline in National Football League ratings, which he in turn blamed on the lingering anthem controversy.

Papa John's have withdrawn some of their planned ad buys, and in exchange, the NFL will give them future ad slots as a good gesture to a national sponsor.

Papa John's has been the NFL's official pizza sponsor since 2010.

President Trump has called on fans to boycott the NFL if the league doesn't crack down on protests.

NFL players began kneeling during the national anthem more than a year ago - starting with a protest against racial inequality and police brutality by Colin Kaepernick, then the quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers.

Goodell and the team owners decided last month not to force players to stand during the anthem. The stock is down 24% this year, while competitors including Domino's have performed well (Domino's stock is up 12% this year). Eight years later, Jones appeared in a Papa John's commercial, where he rapped through the whole thing.

Jones has become a significant Papa John's franchise owner, with the total number of stores owned by Jones in excess of 100 as of 2014.



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