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Mathias Kiwanuka complains about Cowboys holding

Tony Romo was a quarterback on the run in Wednesday night's 24-17 win over the New York Giants.

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The Dallas Cowboys passer enjoyed a remarkable evening considering the play of his interior offensive line. The pocket collapsed around Romo too often, forcing him outside, where the 32-year-old starter made his share of smart decisions with the ball under pressure.

The Giants got close, but not close enough. At least one member of New York's defense is calling foul.

"I haven't been held this much since I was a baby," linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka told Steve Politi of The Star-Ledger.

Kiwanuka, like all of America, knows the game was overseen by a crew of replacement officials. Led by head referee Jim Core, the contingent held its own, but there were overt problems and we saw both teams get away with some madness.

Kiwanuka, despite his complaint, stood up for the replacements: "You've got to understand that these refs have been put in a tough situation, without having weeks, months, years to prepare like the other refs had," he said. "It's definitely tough to come in and pick up the nuances of the NFL. I tip my hats to them, but you notice when the real refs aren't out there."

This might be the best officiating crew we'll see for weeks. The NFL wanted no headline-grabbing gaffes Wednesday night, but with a full slate of regular-season openers on the slate, we might have a few grim stories to tell come Monday morning.

The Giants, meanwhile, will go weeks before facing an interior line as thin as what Dallas marched out on.

Where was New York's feared pass rush? Linemen on both sides of the ball got away with some funny business, but defenders face this all season long. The Giants confront some pressing questions this morning, and those questions aren't dressed in zebra suits.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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