The NFL has seen a flurry of activity recently, headlined by today's trade of star running back Adrian Peterson from the Saints to the Cardinals, but other moves are just as important. The Los Angeles Rams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers both parted ways with starters recently. For the Rams, it was a move on defense, while the Buccaneers made yet another change at kicker.

Rams release former starter Alexander

The Los Angeles Rams made a surprising move by releasing safety Maurice Alexander, who entered the season as the team's starter. ESPN's Alden Gonzalez says that the move was made strictly on the basis of his play and that the team likes what they have in rookie third-round pick John Johnson.

Alexander, who was in the final year of his contract, struggled with the switch to a 3-4 defense, as well as going from playing free safety to strong safety. LaMarcus Joyner, the Rams' other starting safety, is expected to play this Sunday against the Jaguars after missing the last two games.

Pro Football Focus had Alexander graded 73rd out of 83 qualified NFL safeties. Wide receiver Mike Thomas will take his place on the team's active roster. Thomas is returning from a four-game ban for violating the league's substance abuse policy. He will now be the seventh receiver on the team's roster but it is unclear what role he might play in the offense.

Bucs make change at kicker

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have made a change at kicker, putting Nick Folk on injured reserve with a minor designation and signing former kicker Patrick Murray.

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Folk started the season strong after beating out Roberto Aguayo for the starting job, going 4/4 in the team's first two games. He then went 2/7 in the last two games, including missing all three field goals in the team's Thursday night loss.

In bringing in Murray, the team has now come full circle at kicker. He was their kicker in 2014 after beating out Connor Barth, going 20/24 (83.3 percent) on field goal attempts. Murray was then cut in favor of Kyle Brindza, who only lasted four games before being replaced by Barth.

Tampa Bay then drafted kicker Roberto Aguayo in the second-round and parted ways with Barth. The Bucs then brought in Folk to compete with Aguayo this offseason following his awful rookie season. Folk beat him for the starting job during the preseason. Now, Murray is back in Tampa Bay to hopefully put an end once and for all to the team's kicking carousel.