49ers sign safety Antoine Bethea to long-term deal

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Antonie Bethea is leaving the midwest for the west coast, as he bolts from Indianapolis to San Francisco.

Antoine Bethea has spent his entire eight-year career with the Indianapolis Colts, but it appears his time there is over. Bethea, who will be 30 when the 2014-15 season begins, has agreed to a four-year, $26 million deal with the San Francisco 49ersaccording to the Indianapolis Star's Mike Chappell.

The veteran safety took to Twitter to break his own news:

Bethea played in all 16 games in 2013, the sixth consecutive time he's done that. He had 110 combined tackles with 80 solo, a sack, a fumble recovery, two interceptions and six passes defensed. Those are all solid numbers, and some are an improvement over last season, so he's definitely not slowing down.

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In fact, his tackle total was the second-highest of his career and his two interceptions broke a two-season drought in which he didn't snag any. Indianapolis may have struggled to stop the run in 2013, but the pass defense was solid. The Colts ranked No. 13 in the NFL with 231.9 passing yards allowed per game on average.

Bethea was a big part of that, though he wasn't exactly perfect. He does make mistakes, and is not lockdown by any means. He's not a slam-dunk by any stretch of the imagination, and his best seasons came a couple years ago, back when he earned his Pro Bowl appearances.

In San Francisco, Bethea will likely take the place of Donte Whitner, who signed with the Browns on Tuesday.

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