The Rams’ first regular-season opening game as a Los Angeles team since 1994 proved to be a disaster for the former St. Louis franchise, as they were humiliated 28-0 by the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California on Monday night.

San Francisco 49ers Embarrass Los Angeles Rams 28-0 In Season Opener

“It’s embarrassing to go out there and not put any points on the board,” said Rams running back Todd Gurley, a first-round pick from Georgia in the 2015 NFL Draft.

San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick continued his national anthem protest, kneeling alongside his teammate, safety Eric Reid, before the game. The backup QB did not see action until he entered the game with less than three minutes remaining.

By halftime, 49ers starting quarterback Blaine Gabbert had scrambled for more yards (41) than Gurley (28) totaled on the ground. By the time Los Angeles’ best player, defensive tackle Aaron Donald, was ejected late in the fourth quarter, they had managed only 56 rushing yards and 77 passing yards versus 102 penalty yards and 431 punting yards. Gabbert finished 22-for-35 for 170 yards.

First-half touchdown runs from Carlos Hyde and Shaun Draughn (in the first and second, respectively) gave the 49ers a comfortable lead. Vance McDonald scored the third TD early in the fourth quarter, and Hyde scored the fourth and final TD with five minutes remaining in the game.

Citing a four-game stretch of respectable game managing to end the 2015 season, the Rams’ staff spent the last six months attempting to turn Case Keenum into a legitimate NFL starting quarterback who could add value to the franchise. While promising rookie QB Jared Goff sat on the bench as a game-day inactive, Keenum’s offense proved to be a complete disaster. Keenum’s 13 possessions resulted in 10 punts, two interceptions and a failed fourth-down attempt in the final minutes.

After averaging 141.5 yards per game and 6.4 yards per carry in his first four career starts, Gurley has stumbled to 64.2 yards per game and 3.8 yards per carry over his last nine starts. The running back, repeatedly stymied at the line of scrimmage, had a three-yard gain up the middle on fourth and one… and flicked the ball at a 49ers defenseman in frustration, thus earning himself a 15-yard penalty for taunting. Additionally, Donald was flagged for roughing the passer after hitting Gabbert late.

Gabbert will need to perform better as a passer in order to give San Francisco a chance at Carolina next on Sunday. Although his running ability gives head coach Chip Kelly’s offense an asset it sorely missed the previous two years, Gabbert has struggled with basic throws since the preseason. His paltry 4.9 yards-per-attempt figure on Monday night included a clear miss to a wide-open Jeremy Kerley on a potential touchdown.

Although Rams coach Jeff Fisher considered pulling Keenum for Sean Mannion in the fourth quarter, Fisher added at his post-game press conference that the performance “doesn’t change anything” as far as the quarterback pecking order for Week 2.

In the season premier of HBO’s Hard Knocks last month, Fisher famously stated that he’s “not going 7-9 this year,” like his team did last season. Clearly, he will need to improve his quarterback situation as soon as possible if he hopes to avoid repeating that record this season.

SANTA CLARA, CA – SEPTEMBER 12: Carlos Hyde #28 of the San Francisco 49ers stiff arms Alec Ogletree #52 of the Los Angeles Rams during their NFL game at Levi’s Stadium on September 12, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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