Woe and 2; Steelers preaching patience as offense tries to work out of early funk

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger jokes he's getting "gifts" from his receivers these days hoping he'll start throwing the ball around to spark his team's lifeless offense.

At the moment, Roethlisberger figures the best present he can receive is a victory.

The Steelers are 0-2 for the first time in 11 years heading into Sunday night's game against Chicago (2-0). The offense is 30th in points scored and 31st in yards rushing. The team held a meeting on Tuesday afternoon to clear the air while it hopes to avoid its first 0-3 start since 1986.

Roethlisberger downplayed any rift in the locker room, saying everyone is frustrated. Wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery, who endured a 1-8 start with the New York Jets in 2007, says the Steelers need to stick together before the snowball turns into an avalanche.