Bethea was released by the Cardinals last week, which means he doesn't need to wait for the start of the new league year to officially sign with a new team. He'll join the New York secondary as a replacement for Landon Collins, who is joining Washington on a record-breaking contract. Heading into his age-35 season, Bethea undoubtedly has lost a step in coverage, yet he still managed 121 tackles (100 solo) in 2018 after picking off five passes the previous year. His proven ability to pile up tackles should allow for IDP value even if he isn't a true difference-maker for the Giants.
The Cardinals released Bethea on Friday, Field Yates of ESPN reports.
Bethea would've been entering the final season of a three-year contract after leading the Cardinals with 121 tackles (100 solo) in 2018. He still has something to offer a defense if he wants to continue playing, but the rebuilding Cardinals presumably hope to find a younger starter. Bethea will turn 35 in July and now joins a deep group of safeties in free agency.
On top of finishing in the top 20 overall in stops among NFL defenders, Bethea tacked on three sacks and a forced fumble. Playing 99.6 percent of the Cardinals defensive snaps clearly gave him plenty of chances to make his mark, and with one year remaining on his contract, the 34-year-old should remain a mainstay next to rising safety Budda Baker in 2019.
Bethea recorded eight tackles (seven solo) across 60 defensive snaps in Sunday's loss to the Lions.
The 34-year-old is leading the Cardinals with 105 tackles this season, to go along with three passes defensed and two sacks. He hasn't shown any signs of slowing down, as Bethea has participated in 92 percent of the defensive snaps this season.
Bethea recorded 10 sacks (eight solo) and one pass defended during Sunday's 20-17 win over the Packers.
Bethea recorded his highest single-game tackle total since Week 6, and now has 97 tackles on the season. The 34-year-old is a matchup dependent IDP option, and should see a strong workload against the Lions in Week 14.
|2014||San Francisco 49ers||16||86||72.0||14||1||4||71||17.8||49||1||10|
|2015||San Francisco 49ers||7||44||32.0||12||1||0||0||0.0||0||0||2|
|2016||San Francisco 49ers||16||110||95.0||15||0||1||0||0.0||0||0||3|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2014||San Francisco 49ers||16||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||0|
|2015||San Francisco 49ers||7||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2016||San Francisco 49ers||16||0||0||1||0||1||5||1||0|