The Arlington Renegades lost a key piece to their defense from their 2023 XFL championship run after granting him his release from the team.
TSN’s Farhan Lalji reported midday Tuesday that the Renegades had granted the release of linebacker Darnell Sankey after one season with the team. The release is to give Sankey an opportunity to pursue CFL or NFL chances where he previously played prior to the XFL.
Sankey had signed with the XFL back in mid-February where he would join the Renegades at that time. He finished tied for third on the team in the regular season in tackles with 47. Sankey also recorded six tackles for loss, and one sack during the season as well. He added eight tackles in two playoff games with the Renegades helping them win the XFL Title.
Prior to the XFL, Sankey played in the NFL from 2016 until 2019 where he played for five different teams. In 2020, he joined the CFL playing first with the Calgary Stampeders up until 2022. During his time with Calgary, he was named a 2021 CFL West Division All-Star. He would join the Saskatchewan Roughriders for the 2022 season. Sankey established himself as one of the best linebackers in the league racking up 218 tackles, four sacks, and one interception in that span.
The move was a blow for the Renegades as he was a starter on the team and helped the linebacking core especially when Donald Payne got injured during the season. He is the second linebacker on the team to leave after Willie Taylor signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Sankey was leaned on to help the Arlington defense in the middle and performed well. He rarely missed a tackle and was flying all over the field for the team.
Arlington does have talent at linebacker still as leading tackler Payne is still on the roster. The team brought in Tuzar Skipper during the XFL Draft to help with depth as well so that should help the Renegades out with easing the blow with the loss of Sankey. Colin Schooler was also an impactful player at linebacker and should see a bigger role in the defense next year.
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