Since arriving in D.C. in 2013, Jared Jeffrey had never been a regular starter. Until this season, he’d never started as many as 15 league games, and 21 league appearances was his career high. But this season saw him set a new career-high in both league appearances, with 23, and starts, with 19, and even though he’s not the flashiest player on the field, Jeffrey has qualities that make him important to the team.
Jeffrey spent much of 2017 entrenched as a central midfield starter. Through June he had started 14 of the team’s 17 league matches, but then he started five of the next nine through August 23rd, and then didn’t play again over the remaining eight games. Head coach Ben Olsen seemed to prefer the midfield pairing of Ian Harkes and Marcelo Sarvas starting in July, as the pair started three of five of the month’s matches, and they might have kept starting games had Harkes not injured his ankle at the end of the month. Jeffrey looked to be back in the starting picture until the arrival of Russell Canouse all but ended Jeffrey’s 2017 season.
One would figure that Canouse and Harkes are the midfield pairing of the future for D.C. United, but that doesn’t mean that Jeffrey is without a place. One thing the 27-year-old does well is tackle. For players with more than 900 minutes, Jeffrey was 15th in the league in successful tackles per 90 minutes with 3.62. That alone makes him a valuable asset, especially as a substitute when United is trying to hold onto a lead or a draw. He’s a reliable passer (78.46%), though those are not generally dangerous passes and he does not generate many scoring chances.
Jeffrey signed a new contract in January, and he’ll turn 28 years old in June. His contract guaranteed him $115K in 2017, which was 16th most on the team. With all of that in mind:
Do you want Jared Jeffrey back for the 2018 season?
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