If the Eagles are going to use a 3-4 defense this year – and everything points that way – they already have some good pieces in place, according to general manager Howie Roseman.

Roseman, speaking at the podium Thursday at the NFL Scouting Combine, said he believes several of the defensive linemen currently on the roster can play in an odd front and said he doesn’t think a change in defensive philosophy necessarily means a dramatic change in personnel.

A 3-4 defensive front starts with a nose tackle. It’s the most difficult piece to find, since most colleges play a 4-3 front, so they’re not developing very many pure nose tackles. But Roseman said he believes Antonio Dixon, who the Eagles reacquired late last year after he spent 2009 through 2011 in Philly, is a perfect fit.

“I don’t think there’s any question about it,” Roseman said. “That’s his skill set. He’s a big body, [makes] good use of his hands, he’s a run stopper – he’s kind of what you’re going to look for if you’re going to look for a 3-4 nose tackle.”

The Eagles’ most critical building block on the defensive line is Fletcher Cox, who was an all-rookie pick last year after the Eagles took him in the first round out of Mississippi State.

Roseman said the 6-foot-4, 300-pound Cox, a defensive tackle as a rookie, can play and be effective at any position in any defense.

“Fletcher is a unique player because he’s got incredible versatility,” Roseman said. “He can really play in any scheme. He can play in a 4-3, he can play in a 3-4, and he can do any spot in those alignments. In a 4-3, he can be an end, [in a 3-4] he can be a 3 technique [B-gap pass rusher outside the guard], he can be a nose tackle, he can be a 5 technique [3-4 end lining up outside the tackle], he can be a 4 technique [3-4 end lining up across from a tackle].

“He has an incredible skill set, and he does all those things really well. You’re looking for a big jump from him year one to year two. Young guy, [22] years old -- we’re excited about Fletcher Cox and what he can bring to our football team.”