The return of the Los Angeles Rams to the NFL began with a miserable 28-0 defeat to NFC West rivals the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night.

Niners running back Carlos Hyde led the way with 88 yards and two touchdowns, while quarterback Blaine Gabbert threw a touchdown pass to tight end Vance McDonald and ran for another score in the first game of Chip Kelly's tenure as head coach.

The Rams, who returned to LA from St Louis this off-season after leaving in 1994, had star defensive lineman Aaron Donald ejected in the fourth quarter, while running back Todd Gurley was held to 47 yards on 17 carries.

The 49ers' back-up quarterback Colin Kaepernick and safety Eric Reid again opted to kneel during the national anthem in protest at the treatment of black Americans. Team-mates Antoine Bethea and Eli Harold each raised a fist to join the protest, as did Rams duo Kenny Britt and Robert Quinn.

In Monday night's other game, Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown led the Pittsburgh Steelers to a 38-16 win over the Washington Redskins.

Roethlisberger threw for 300 yards with three touchdowns and an interception, with wide receiver Brown accounting for 126 yards and two touchdowns.

Eli Rogers had the other touchdown catch, from a pass which bounced off the chest of team-mate Sammie Coates, while DeAngelo Williams ran for 143 yards and two scores to ensure the suspended Le'Veon Bell was not missed.

Washington QB Kirk Cousins racked up 329 yards but threw two interceptions.