Published: Wed, November 15, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Papa John's apologizes for comments about National Football League player protests

Papa John's apologizes for comments about National Football League player protests

The Papa John's pizza chain apologized Tuesday for comments made by CEO John Schnatter, who had blamed the NFL and protesting players for its sales struggles during football season. "That definitely was not our intention", Papa John's wrote.

But on Tuesday night, Papa John's official Twitter account published a string of tweets addressing their statements on that earnings call.

A third tweet from the company said that going forward, it will work with the National Football League and its players to "find a positive way forward", and is open to ideas from all, "except neo-nazis" - throwing in a middle finger emoji.

The pizza powerhouse ended with, "We will work with the players and league to find a positive way forward". Open to ideas from all. "Except neo-nazis", the company tweeted, offering a "middle finger" emoji to "those guys".

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"The NFL has hurt us", Schnatter said. The NFL has been a long and valued partner over the years. "Except neo-nazis." It has previously tried to distance itself from white supremacists who praised Schnatter's comments, saying it does not want those groups to buy its pizza. Schnatter said Goodell was hurting his company and told investors "NFL leadership has hurt Papa John's shareholders".

Several prominent figures criticized Schnatter for his initial insensitive comments, insinuating that pizza sales are more important than taking a stand against racism and police brutality - the reasons behind the majority of players protesting during the anthem.

"But good or bad, leadership starts at the top, and this is an example of poor leadership".

While Jones supported the Papa John's CEO, it's clear the company saw enough negative reaction to create an apology.

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