The sale came right before the NFL dropped Papa John’s as an official sponsor. 

By Dan Gartland
March 07, 2018

Peyton Manning has sold the 31 Denver-area Papa John’s franchises he purchased after signing with the Broncos in 2012, a spokesman for the pizza company confirmed to the Denver Post

Manning will remain as a spokesman for the brand, however. 

The sale was finalized on Feb. 26, two days before the NFL and the pizza company announced they were ending their partnership. Papa John’s maintains sponsorship deals with 22 NFL teams but Pizza Hut has replaced it as the league’s official pizza.

The decision to end the league-wide sponsorship deal after eight years followed controversial remarks by Papa John’s then-CEO, John Schnatter, who said in October that NFL players’ protests during the national anthem were to blame for the pizza’s declining sales. Schnatter was removed as CEO on Jan. 1. 

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