John Schnatter, the founder and CEO of Papa John's, said the league and its leadership "hurt" the company by not resolving the player protests that have been taking place during the National Anthem.
"The NFL has been a long and valued partner over the years but we are certainly disappointed that NFL and its leadership did not resolve the ongoing situation to the satisfaction of all parties," Schnatter said during an earnings call Wednesday. "This should have been nipped in the bud a year and a half ago." Shares of the pizza chain fell nearly 10 percent on Wednesday.
Papa John's, which has been the official pizza of the NFL since 2010, said that the combination of declining NFL viewership and negative consumer sentiment associated with the league caused sales in the third quarter to slump reports CNBC.