San Francisco 49ers

Sac State’s Darnell Sankey an observer at 49ers ‘local’ pro day

SANTA CLARA -- Sacramento State linebacker Darnell Sankey was on hand for the 49ers' "local" pro day Wednesday but could only watch due to a freak injury suffered during a college all-star game in January.

Sankey was following through on a drill during the first day of practices at the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in Carson, Calif. when he slipped on the concrete that rings the field and crashed into the stadium wall. He suffered a severe high-ankle sprain and was wearing a walking boot on his right foot and using crutches Wednesday.

He said the circumstance was similar to the one in which former 49ers running back Reggie Bush slipped and went into a wall last year at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis. He suffered a season-ending knee injury and in January sued the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission over what the lawsuit called a "ring of death" inside the stadium.

Sankey said the boot will come off next week and that he should be running again in a month or so.

He finished second in the FCS and first in the Big Sky Conference with 153 tackles in 2015. That included a school-record of 27 tackles against Weber State. He hasn’t been able to work out for NFL teams but said he’d run a 4.55-second 40-yard dash -- speedy for a big linebacker -- if he were healthy.

At 6-2, 250 pounds, the 49ers likely see Sankey as an inside linebacker. But he said other teams are wondering whether he can play on the outside as well. Sankey could be the first Sacramento State player drafted since 2004.

"Inside, outside -- I'll do both, honestly," he said. "I've gotten a lot of interest as a 3-4 outside (linebacker) and a 4-3 inside as well. I'll play wherever I'm needed."

Sankey was eligible to attend the local pro day because he grew up in nearby San Jose. UC Davis cornerback Shamawn Wright, who is from Antioch, also was one of the 67 players on hand for the session.

Et cetera -- Early-round draft picks rarely take part in local pro days for fear of injury, but Stanford guard Joshua Garnett was active during the 49ers' session on Wednesday. Garnett, who could be drafted as high as the second round, said he wanted to show off his athleticism after playing in Stanford's power-based system.

* The only two quarterbacks on hand were Stanford's Kevin Hogan and San Jose State's Joe Gray. Cal's Jared Goff, who could be a Top 10 pick, was on the east coast. He is visiting the Eagles Thursday.

* Two receivers who stood out, largely because of their size, were 6-3, 230-pound Stephen Anderson from Cal and 6-4, 234-pound Stanford receiver Devon Cajuste from Stanford. Some NFL teams think Cajuste can play tight end.

Matt Barrows: @mattbarrows, read more about the team at