The Washington Times-Herald

Indianapolis Colts

July 30, 2012

Bethea could be in for big year

Safety stepping into friendly defensive system



15 total passes — almost twice as many as the Colts’ total of eight.

Bethea never has had more than four interceptions in a single season, but he is a two-time Pro Bowl selection who has recorded at least 100 tackles in three of the past four seasons.

Reed became an eight-time Pro Bowler and the 2004 Defensive Player of the Year playing safety in a 3-4 scheme in Baltimore. Pittsburgh’s Troy Palomalu has been named to seven Pro Bowls and won the 2010 Defensive Player of the Year award playing in a similar scheme.

Bethea now will play the same position for the Colts.

“I’m extremely excited, just seeing what those guys have done in their career in a system that’s similar,” he said. “I’m just trying to really watch as much film as I can and see what I can pick up from those guys.

And with Coach Pagano being defensive minded and being a DB coach in the past, I’m extremely excited to see what I can do.”

What he did last year was pretty good, recording 139 tackles with seven passes broken up and two forced fumbles. The tackle total was the highest of his career by 33 stops, and Bethea certainly will be among the leaders on a defense that could feature as many as six new starters.

He said the Colts bonded well during offseason workouts, and now they’re hoping to build off that momentum through the start of training camp.

“We had a good two months with each other,” Bethea said. “So we’re back out here and excited to get things going. We ended OTAs well. So we just want to pick it back up there.”




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