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Curtis Lofton says Saints-Falcons not a rivalry game

When the Atlanta Falcons take on the New Orleans Saints Thursday night on NFL Network, it will reignite a rivalry that has been testy off the field, but not so much in the win-loss column.

Saints linebacker Scott Shanle called the Falcons "little brothers" after handing Atlanta its first loss of the season in Week 10. And for some Saints players, it isn't much of a sibling rivalry

"Being here in this program, I feel like they see it as a divisional game, not a rivalry game," former Falcon Curtis Lofton said Tuesday, via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

From the Saints perspective, the Falcons would have to win more frequently for it to be a true rivalry. Saints fullback Jed Collins told reporters that New Orleans has been the Falcons' "Kryptonite."

The Saints have won 11 of the past 13 meetings, including four straight. The last time the Falcons swept the season series was 2005, when Michael Vick was scampering all over the Georgia Dome.

Regardless of the recent records the rivalry -- or whatever Lofton wants to call it -- has been entertaining on the field and provided some off-field bickering any dysfunctional family can appreciate.

After the Week 10 loss, Falcons wide receiver Roddy White didn't give the Saints credit.

"It's not like they came out here and won a game," White said. "I think we kind of gave it to them."

Lofton took issue with White's words. "I think part of your job as a professional is to take a loss and give the other team the credit," Lofton said Tuesday. "You don't just say, 'We gave them a win.'"

Curtis sounds like he cares at least little about what a 'non-rival' has to say.

Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.

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