Former NFL Star and ESPN Analyst Cris Carter to Kickoff NFL Season by Delivering Papa John’s Pizza

LOUISVILLE, Ky.  (  While the NFL schedule doesn’t officially kick off until this evening, the first winner of the 2010 season is Anthony Green of Phoenix, Ariz., thanks to Papa John’s, the Official Pizza Sponsor of the NFL, and former NFL star Cris Carter.

Carter, an analyst on ESPN, will moonlight as a pizza delivery driver Thursday night as part of Papa John’s “Fantasy to Reality” campaign, which is designed to make the NFL season “better than ever” for football fans. Pizza delivery by one of the all-time great wide receivers is certainly one way to do it – the grand prize of a sweepstakes conducted by Papa John’s through Facebook as a way to celebrate the fantasy football phenomenon and kickoff the NFL season.

“I was on the receiving end of many passes delivered right on target during my career in the NFL, and this is a chance for me to deliver something every football fan would love to catch – Papa John’s pizza,” Carter said. “Pizza and football go great together and I know Anthony and his friends are going to enjoy the pizza I bring with me, and I’m looking forward to watching the game with them and talking football.”

A father of two, Green and his family are major football fans. “Growing up in Michigan, I am naturally a Detroit fan and a Michigan supporter so the chance to receive a special pizza delivery from Carter, a long-time nemesis in both his NFL and college career, is a true gift,” said Green. “While Cris Carter might have spoiled a few Sundays and Mondays for me while watching football, there’s no denying that there are few wide receivers in the history of football better than him. To have Cris in my house, enjoying some Papa John’s pizza, while watching football — wow, it just doesn’t get much better than that.”

Green is in two fantasy football leagues. And to recognize fantasy football leagues and players throughout the NFL season, Papa John’s, a brand known for “Better Ingredients, Better Pizza,” is searching for the fantasy football league that’s “better than the rest.” Fantasy football players and fans can get information about the contest beginning Thursday on Papa John’s Facebook page or at

A mix of fun and serious ingredients that go into forming and sustaining a great league will be considered, such as: year established, original owners still participating, location of draft party, food served at league events, league name, quality of trophy, scoring system, and more. It’s a chance for fantasy football aficionados to set their league apart from the rest and earn a trip to the 2011 NFL Draft in New York City.

“This is the first of many opportunities Papa John’s fans will have to make this football season better than ever,” said Andrew Varga, Papa John’s chief marketing officer. “We have planned game day specials throughout the season, as well as other ways to thank our loyal customers and the loyal fans of the NFL, which we will continue to unveil as the season gets more and more exciting.”

To help kick off the football season in a big way for fans, Papa John’s is offering “Free Topping Football” – a large pizza for $10 with up to three free toppings. On NFL game days, fans can go bigger with an extra-large pizza and score up to seven free toppings.

Papa John’s is in the first year of a multi-year sponsorship with the NFL and Papa John’s is also the Official Pizza of the Arizona Cardinals, Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Miami Dolphins, Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams, Tennessee Titans and Washington Redskins.

Headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, Papa John’s International, Inc. (NASDAQ: PZZA) is the world’s third largest pizza company. For 10 of the last 11 years, consumers have rated Papa John’s No. 1 in customer satisfaction among all national pizza chains in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). Papa John’s also was honored by Restaurants & Institutions Magazine (R&I) with the 2009 Gold Award for Consumers’ Choice in Chains in the pizza segment and was named 2007 Pizza Today Chain of the Year. For more information about the company or to order pizza online, visit Papa John’s at

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