Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson gave Little Caesars—or any other pizza brand, really—the perfect viral-marketing soundbite on Sunday.
In a clash with the Cleveland Browns, Wilson was at the line of scrimmage when he decided to change the play call. He yelled “pizza, pizza, pizza” to his teammates before taking the snap and rushing around the Browns’ defense for about a 20-yard gain that set up an eventual touchdown.
Even the NFL’s official “X” account caught on:
Did @dangerusswilson just yell “pizza pizza”? It worked!
— NFL (@NFL) November 26, 2023
Football fans and even casual fans may be familiar with former Broncos’ quarterback Peyton Manning’s use of the word “Omaha” repeatedly to change up play calls at the line of scrimmage. Manning’s word choice was endorsed by the Omaha, Nebraska Visitor’s Bureau, which even said it had tried to hire Manning as a pitch man for tourism ad campaigns.
“Omaha was just a indicator word,” Manning explained after retiring from football. “It was a trigger word that meant we had changed the play, there was low time on the clock and the ball needed to be snapped right now to kind of let my offensive lineman know that ‘Hey, we’d gone to Plan B, there’s low time on the clock.’ It’s a rhythmic three-syllable word, ‘O-ma-ha, set hut.'”
Whether or not Wilson’s “pizza, pizza, pizza” audible call will become as famous as Manning’s “Omaha” calls remains to be seen. But if Wilson continues to use it—and people continue to notice—it’s easy to picture future ad roles for Wilson.