Faizan Malik, like many Washington, D.C. natives, is dedicated to the Redskins. Malik, who currently resides in Salisbury, Maryland, hasn't missed watching a game since 2007, owns more than 20 jerseys and even drives a burgundy car.
That passion for the team is why a choice that would seem easy on the surface to others could end up being very stressful for him. And whether he has to make that choice will be decided on Sunday evening.
You see, Malik's brother, Sufyan, is getting married on January 7, with the ceremony starting at 5 p.m. and a reception scheduled to follow. Now, January 7 also just so happens to be the first day of the NFL's Wild Card weekend — and if the Redskins can beat the Giants this weekend and the Lions and Packers avoid what would be a devastating tie, there's a very good chance Washington would be slated to play during Sufyan's big day.
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Hello, potential conflict.
"The notion that the playoff game and wedding might be at the same time just occurred to me over the weekend, when the Redskins' path to the playoffs became a little clearer," Malik said in an interview a few hours after tweeting CSN Redskins Insider JP Finlay to see if Finlay had any intel on the matter. "I am praying that by some grace of God the game can either be a 1 p.m. start or anytime on Sunday the 8th. I would even take an 8 p.m. start on the 7th, as the reception would be wrapping up by that point and I could sneak out without a problem."
As things stand now, it looks like Malik's odds of avoiding an unenviable intersection of two crucial life events are solid. As he said, any playoff game on Sunday would be in the clear, and the late game on Saturday would be, well, somewhat fine.
But an earlier kickoff on Saturday? That would present a serious problem.
"If the wedding and playoff are at the same time, I’m not sure what I would do at this point," he said. "Every Redskins game is huge to me, especially a playoff game, and my family knows this. I will not be missing the game though, that I can tell you for sure."
Malik said he's exploring options that would help him stay tuned to the Redskins' playoff proceedings, if they do indeed qualify. Placing a TV near the DJ booth or downloading an app that would allow for live-streaming are among his possible contingency plans.
There is one thing he can't prepare for, though: The backlash from his parents if he's forced to be distracted at or prematurely leave Sufyan's wedding.
"I texted my brother [Tuesday] about this issue, and he sent a laughing emoji. He knows how much the Redskins and this game mean to me." Malik said. "It’s my mom and dad I’m worried about."