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What’s the safest DC athlete jersey to buy?

It’s a conundrum every sports fan faces at one point or another: Is it worth it to invest in this jersey?

Even for those who don’t believe in wearing jerseys anymore once they’ve reached a certain age, the question remains for gifts for the next generation, for children, and nieces and nephews. Sure, you’ve got your favorites, but will you be able to wear that piece of gear without regret at this time next year? What about three years from now, or five, or 10?

There are a good many factors to consider. How much has the player already accomplished, that if something tragic (an injury, a trade, an off-the-field incident) happened tomorrow, you would still be happy with the purchase? How many years can you reasonably expect them to still play for your team, and how productive should you expect them to be during that time? Once outside the lines, are they the type of human you’d be happy with whom to so closely associate yourself? And what kind of long-term legacy can you expect them to have once they are gone?

In that spirit, we polled a few members our WTOP sports staff (sports director George Wallace, sports anchors Dave Preston and Rob Woodfork, and myself) to pick the 10 safest bets for a D.C., big five pro athlete jersey right now. Any ranking like this is sure to be fluid as the games are played and players move into and out of town. Our results were a bit unexpected. Considering we disagreed among ourselves, you may well disagree with our final outcome.

The four of us ranked players in five different categories on a 1-5 scale, for a total of 100 possible points. The categories: Expected time remaining playing for a D.C. team, past performances and credentials for a D.C. team, future upside, character (especially off the field), and team legend status/Hall of Fame probability.

Here’s what we came up with.

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