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Safety Antoine Bethea, a member of two Super Bowl teams during his eight seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, envisions an opportunity to return with the 49ers.
Bethea has one Super Bowl ring, and he said Wednesday that he believes his newly signed four-year contract gives him an opportunity for another.
“Of course, sitting here, I wish I had two Super Bowl rings instead of one,” he said on a conference call with Bay Area reporters. “That’s one of the reasons I’m here in San Fran. It’s a great opportunity to try to get another ring. That’s what I’m here to do.”
Bethea (pronounced Beth-ay) agreed to a contract in the opening moments of free agency Tuesday to help the 49ers compensate for the loss of Donte Whitner, who agreed to terms with the Cleveland Browns. Bethea is known as a smart, hard-working player who started the past 105 games, including playoffs.
“Antoine is a durable, experienced player who has competed at a high level throughout his career in the National Football League,” 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said in a statement. “He has proven to be a man of high character and is a welcome addition to our team and the Bay Area community.”
Bethea, who turns 30 in July, arrived in the Bay Area on Tuesday night and had dinner with defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. On Wednesday, he passed a physical and signed the paperwork on his new contract.
“First of all, it’s a winning organization,” Bethea said. “From the past couple of years from the outside looking in, it’s an extremely good team. It looks like they have a ball on the field. Coming in, it's a great defense, a great front seven and great back end. I just wanted to come in and do my part.”