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Irv Cross

Former broadcasting legend and former Pro Bowler Irv Cross dies at 81

The Philadelphia Eagles selected defensive back Irv Cross with their 98th overall pick in the seventh-round of the 1961 NFL draft. Cross spent his first five seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles. He joined the Los Angeles Rams in 1966, where he spent three years with the team.

Irv Cross returned to the Philadelphia Eagles for the final stop of his NFL career. Cross put together a successful NFL career that consisted of two NFL Pro Bowl selections. During his nine-year career with both the Eagles and Rams, Irv Cross recorded 22 interceptions, 14 fumble recoveries, eight forced fumbles and two touchdowns.


The former defensive back made history after spending nine years in the NFL. Let's celebrate the history that Irv Cross made in the sports industry after his NFL career.

How did Irv Cross make history after his NFL career?

Former NFL DB Irv Cross

After spending nine years in the NFL, Irv Cross made history by becoming the first African American to work full-time as a sports analyst. Cross joined CBS two years after retiring from the NFL. In 197,1 Irv Cross joined Brent Misburger, Phyllis George, and Jimmy Snyder on the The NFL Today show on CBS.


In 2009 Irv Cross earned the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award. Irv Cross spent 14 years as an anchor on The NFL Today show and 23 years with CBS as a sports analyst. Irv Cross wrote Bearing the Cross: My Inspiring Journey from Poverty to the NFL and Sports Television, which discusses his career.

In 2018 Irv Cross was diagnosed with a mild case of cognitive dementia. On February 28, 2021 Irv Cross passed away at the age of 81 in Roseville, Minnesota. The former NFL defensive back and CBS sports analyst has two daughters, Susan and Lisa, from his first marriage. He also has two children from his second marriage Matthew and Sarah.

Irv Cross helped pave the road for all African American sports analysts today. He broke down barriers when he became the first African American sports analyst on national television. Cross will be deeply missed inside and outside of the sporting industry.

Irv Cross was one of 12 deaths that the NFL faced in February. The month of February has taken Vincent Jackson, Marty Schottenheimer, Irv Cross and Louis Nix III. All these former NFL players and coaches will be deeply missed.

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