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Intriguing matchup

Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians is seen

Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians is seen on the sidelines against the Indianapolis Colts during the first half. (Nov. 24, 2013) Credit: AP

First-year head coaches Bruce Arians of the Cardinals and Chip Kelly of the Eagles have their teams headed in the right direction, and their matchup Sunday in Philadelphia has major ramifications for both playoff hopefuls.

There's even a little smack talk sprinkled in.

Arians chided Kelly's read-option offense Wednesday, suggesting that it's a "great college offense" that doesn't work in the NFL because it exposes the quarterback to injury.

Kelly shot back the next day. "I don't care what other people think," he said. "To spend time to think about what someone else thinks is counter to everything I've ever believed in my life."

Both offenses seem to be working just fine. After a rocky start, the Cardinals' Carson Palmer has been one of the NFL's most efficient quarterbacks over the past month. In the Cardinals' four-game winning streak, Palmer has a 110.8 rating, and has thrown for more than 300 yards in his last two games.

Eagles quarterback Nick Foles, who replaced an injured Michael Vick and has since retained the starting job, has completed 70.8 percent of his passes and thrown for 10 touchdowns and no interceptions in his last three games. For the season, Foles has 16 touchdown passes and has yet to throw an interception.

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