Michael Wilhoite doubts he'll play at Browns

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- San Francisco 49ers inside linebacker Michael Wilhoite said Thursday that an MRI exam of his injured ankle revealed no break; rather, he was diagnosed with a high-ankle sprain.

Wilhoite, who was not wearing a protective boot nor showing a noticeable limp, also said he did not expect to play Sunday at the Cleveland Browns. As such, Gerald Hodges should get the start in Wilhoite's place, next to NaVorro Bowman in the 49ers' 3-4 defense.

Hodges replaced Wilhoite after he came out in the first quarter of the 49ers' 26-20 overtime victory at the Chicago Bears on Sunday and had six tackles, including one for a loss, in 65 snaps.

Wilhoite said he initially injured the ankle in the fourth quarter of the 49ers' loss to the Arizona Cardinals the week prior and tried to play through the pain against the Bears.

"Let me get out there and see if the adrenaline kicks in," Wilhoite said. "It didn't happen.

"The first play, it was pretty painful. Then it was aggravated more."

Hodges, who was acquired from the Minnesota Vikings in a trade on Oct. 6, said he is still learning the intricacies of the 3-4 after playing in a 4-3 with the Vikings. Playing alongside a college teammate at Penn State in Bowman should help.

"I'm here to show that I'm the kind of player who can play all downs," Hodges said.

Said defensive coordinator Eric Mangini: "He's a high-energy guy."