Papa Johns apologizes for blaming low sales on national anthem protests

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At the beginning of the month, Papa John's company founder and CEO John Schnatter came out of nowhere and blasted the NFL for not doing anything to stop players from protesting during the National Anthem, because it was bad for their business.

The pizza delivery chain noted in a series of tweets that it merely described "factors" instrumental in the earnings dip, declaring that "we sincerely apologize to anyone that thought they were divisive". "That was definitely not our intention", Papa John's tweeted.

John Schnatter blasted NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on November 1 in an investor conference call, blaming him for sinking pizza sales.

The pizza chain's apology comes as the value on Papa John's shares plummeted in the wake on Schnatter's statements about the National Football League in early November.

"The NFL has hurt us", Schnatter said.

The pizza chain said that it supports "the players' movement to create a new platform for change" but that it also believes that "as Americans, we should honor our anthem".

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After the statements, a white-supremacist publication claimed Papa John's as their official pizza.

Papa John's added that it is "open to ideas from all". Except neo-nazis - those guys. The company scrambled to try to distance itself from the alt-right.

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.

On Tuesday evening, Papa John's - which has been a league sponsor since 2010 - attempted an apology on Twitter.

Others disputed the idea that the protesting players would want to work with the company.

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