After crying about sagging pizza sales and blaming it on the NFL, Big Pizza is dunking on Papa John's. Pizza Hut came out and ripped Papa John's a new one by saying, "We're not seeing impact on any of that on our business," according to Business Insider. Even DiGiorno's came out swinging:
So why does it seem like it's just Papa John's? Probably because their pizza tastes like the box it came in.
But let's bust out some Reynolds Wrap for a second here, guys, because we've got some tinfoil hat-making to do. We've found ourselves smack dab in the middle of one of the biggest pizza/sports-related stories of the decade: Papa John's withdrew its ads from the NFL because they think the NFL's bungling of the national anthem protests has cost them pizza sales. And now there are some conspiracy theories afoot.
On the surface, this is just a unilateral act by Papa John himself, who is upset at "poor leadership" surrounding the NFL's racial injustice protests. But there might be more than meets the eye here: there could be some shady collusion going down. Why? Because Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is also an owner of upwards of 100 Papa John's franchises throughout Texas. Coincidence?!? I think not. This deserves a hashtag. Is #pizzagate already taken?
Anyway, Pro Football Talk came out with a rumor-riddled article about how "in some league circles" people are talking about the potential of collusion between Jones and Papa John (I refuse to call him by his real name). Jones is mad at Goodell for how he handled the suspension of his star running back Ezekiel Elliott. Jones also came out strongest against the anthem protests, saying any player who did not stand for the anthem would not play—this after plopping down front and center to take a knee before the anthem with his players before a Monday Night Football game in September. And you're here to tell me that Jones is in no way connected to Johnny Pops coming out of the blue to complain about the NFL's leadership?! Hogwash.
Just watch that video again take a look at how deep Jones is in with Papa John's. I'll wait.
Christ, that hurts parts of my moral compass I didn't even know existed until now.