Gwilt, 28, joined the Bombers as a delisted free agent in October and has begun training with his new club after 126 games with St Kilda.
"I see him playing both roles. He's obviously pretty good at both of them," coach James Hird told essendonfc.com.au.
"He made his mark at St Kilda as a backman, but in recent years he has played some good forward games as well."
Gwilt has kicked just 25 goals in his career – six in 2014 when occasionally forced to plug holes in St Kilda's forward line.
Bombers remain upbeat
His best tally was three goals against the Western Bulldogs in round 20.
However Gwilt's best football came when he played at full-back before injuring his knee in 2011. He was very good in the 2010 finals series.
Hird also said key forward Joe Daniher would "play a little bit in the ruck as well" as the club tried to cover the loss of Patrick Ryder, who left the Bombers at the end of the season and joined Port Adelaide during the trade period.
Essendon recruited Jonathan Giles from Greater Western Sydney to partner Tom Bellchambers, who played just eight games in 2014 due to a significant ankle injury.
"You always want the opportunity to play two ruckmen," Hird said. "Both those guys are quite mobile and can take a mark and play forward."
The Bombers face an uncertain off-season with estimations that up to 20 players on its list received infraction notices last week with tribunal hearings relating to those notices to begin in December.
Hird is also awaiting a Federal Court decision after he appealed an earlier decision that found ASADA's investigation into the club's 2012 supplements program was lawful.
The Bombers, however, announced it had recorded a profit in 2014 and it also added former Bulldog Adam Cooney to the club during the trade period.