Former NFL cornerback and legendary commentator Irv Cross passed away at age 81, CBS Sports announced on Sunday. Cross was a commentator with CBS from 1971 to 1994.
"He was a true gentleman and trailblazer in the sports television industry and will be remembered for his accomplishments and the paths he paved for those who followed," Sean McManus, the chairman of CBS Sports, said in a statement.
Cross was drafted by the Eagles in 1961 from Northwestern and appeared in Pro Bowls in both 1964 and 1965. He was traded to the Rams in 1966 but he would eventually return to the Eagles in 1969, retiring that same year.
He was with CBS for 23 years, 14 of them as an analyst on "The NFL Today," and was the first Black recipient of the Pete Rozelle Award. The award was given to a member of the media by the Pro Football Hall of Fame for "longtime exceptional contributions to radio and television in professional football."
Cross died near his home in Roseville, Minnesota, according to the Eagles. In the release, the Eagles said flowers and donations could be sent in Cross's honor to the Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation or the Concussion Legacy Foundation.