Indianapolis Colts free safety Antoine Bethea is one of the league’s most respected players, as he consistently does his job year-in and year-out without much noise. He isn’t good in coverage anymore and fits strong safety better than free, but he’s still a solid starter in this league and is poised for a final big payday as a 29-year-old. It’s possible that the Colts try and sign someone who is better in deep coverage than Bethea, but I don’t see that happening. I think he’s too close for the Colts organization to move on from him, and it’s not like he’s a liability either. As long as he’s affordable, which he should be, then the Colts will most likely keep him.
According to Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star, Bethea “has expressed a desire” to continue playing for the Colts, and this definitely shouldn’t come as a surprise. I’m sure the Colts would like to have him back at the right price, but I get the feeling that Bethea would love to be back “at the right price”.
Since Bethea is, again, likely in his final opportunity to receive significant money, I would be surprised if he re-signed with the team before hitting free agency on the 11th of March. He should test the market to see what is out there, even if it’s at the risk of becoming undervalued. He has his struggles in coverage, but he also had over 100 tackles this past season (his fifth straight year). I expect him to be back in Indy next season, but he also isn’t exactly a must-sign player for them either.