The 49ers and Eagles have cultivated one of the most heated rivalries in the NFL, but that didn't stop Philadelphia's head coach, Nick Sirianni, from praising San Francisco quarterback Brock Purdy and coach Kyle Shanahan.
Sirianni went in-depth, highlighting why Purdy has been so successful in the NFL while revealing a personal connection to Matt Campbell, the 49ers quarterback's head coach at Iowa State.
"I think he's a winner, and that goes back to -- obviously, I played with his college coach and a bunch of guys that were on that staff," Sirianni told reporters on Wednesday. "We were all at Mount Union together and they've been talking about this guy for a long time. He led them to the Fiesta Bowl. He's a winner and just continues to win. I think you saw that all last year, and also what he's doing this year.
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"I think he's got good athleticism, I think he knows where to go with the football in a timely fashion, and I think he is accurate going there. Those are the things you want in a quarterback, and so hats off to him and Kyle and their staff for putting him in good positions and continuing to develop this guy.
"Again, I just think the guy is a winner, and I have a lot of respect for him, and you can see that on tape."
While Purdy has been piloting the 49ers' offense to elite heights, Shanahan's scheme effectively has been the engine for one of the most potent units in the NFL during his time in San Francisco.
The Eagles coach detailed what makes Shanahan such an elite offensive mind, praising the 49ers coach's ability to marry various concepts to keep opposing defenses on their heels.
San Francisco 49ers
"He's been really good at it for a long time," Sirianni explained. "I think he does a really good job, as I watch, meshing his system together. There are things that look alike that -- you know, one thing looks like this and it's a play-action pass or a shot or a run, and they all marry together really good."
Sirianni also cited Shanahan's expertise with multiple positions, while relaying the tremendous respect that players who have played for him have for the 49ers coach.
"I think you've always seen his quarterbacks play well," Sirianni said. "I think you also see that -- I always admire how his receivers play. You can see he has a background in receiver play. I obviously know a couple guys. Julio [Jones], I'll let him say what he feels about him, but I know he has a lot of respect for him. Pierre Garçon played for him, someone I know, and Pierre had some of his best years with him, so I admire that as well."
"He's an outstanding coach. The other thing is I look at myself. I grew up going to football practices. I'm sure he did the same, and he's been around this sport for a long time. So, just a ton of respect for him and the job he's done and continues to do over there."
Shanahan echoed a similar respect for Sirianni while speaking to reporters on Friday, citing his admiration for the Eagles' commitment to the run game on offense.
"Watching how accountable he has his team, how hard they play, the style they play," Shanahan told reporters. "I love the commitment to the run game that they do on offense, I think that's one of the coolest things. It's not just that they're committed to the run, but they know what they're doing too.
"They know how to use the quarterback as a runner. They know the adjustments defenses have to make. And they know when they are making those adjustments, how to use him as a passer. So I got a lot of respect for him schematically and what they've done there. Don't know him the best, but [former 49ers vice president of communications] Bob Lange speaks very high of him, so he must be a cool dude."
No team in the NFC has won more games than the 49ers and Eagles over the last two seasons, with both heavyweights occupying the top two spots in the conference's current playoff seeding.
While the players battle it out on the field on Sunday, plenty of mutual respect will come from the incredibly successful head coaches on each sideline.