Touchy subject: RB getting too much work?

SAN FRANCISCO -- Marshawn Lynch has 99 touches, defined as carries plus receptions, through the Seattle Seahawks' first four games. Only five players since 2008 have had more to this point in a season. How many is too many?

Arian Foster has 112 this season. Matt Forte (110 through Week 4 in 2008) and Chris Johnson (106 in 2008) each started 16 games after getting more touches to this point in a season. Frank Gore (102) and Darren McFadden (101) missed games to injury after their heavy workloads to begin the 2010 season, but there's no evidence, on the surface, that getting all those early touches was the culprit.

The chart ranks NFC West players by most touches (receptions plus carries) divided by how many games their teams have played, regardless of whether a player has missed games to injury. Lynch is well out front.

2012 NFC West Offensive Touches Per Team Game