Actor Carl Weathers known for his role as Apollo Creed in the “Rocky” movies has died at the age of 76, as per ESPN.

Weathers’ manager Matt Luber said that he died on Thursday. His family issues the following statement:

“Carl was an exceptional human being who lived an extraordinary life,” his family said. “Through his contributions to film, television, the arts and sports, he has left an indelible mark and is recognized worldwide and across generations. He was a beloved brother, father, grandfather, partner, and friend.”

Weathers played LB in the NFL for the Oakland Raiders from 1970-1971. He then went on to play in the Canadian Football League for the B.C. Lions from 1971-1973.

After he left football, Weathers pursued a career in acting. His big break came when he played Apollo Creed in 1976’s “Rocky,” starring Sylvester Stallone.

Weathers went on to reprise the role in three more “Rocky” movies until his character died in 1984’s “Rocky IV.”

. Weathers appeared in 1987’s “Predator,” with Arnold Schwarzenegger. He also had a memorable role in the 1996 comedy classic “Happy Gilmore” opposite Adam Sandler.

Weathers is survived by two sons.

Actor Carl Weathers in “Rocky.” Photo courtesy of 247newsagency.com

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