Rooney currently stands joint 13th on the all-time list with 84 appearances for his country but will move up a couple of places if he features in both the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers against Montenegro and Poland.
It would still leave him some way adrift of former Manchester United team-mate David Beckham, the most capped outfield player with 115, and Peter Shilton, who featured on 10 more occasions and currently claims the record.
However, Rooney is not due to celebrate his 28th birthday until later this month, and if he extends his career into his mid-30s, as both Gerrard and Lampard have done, even Shilton's mark is well within reach.
"Wayne could go through the roof when it comes to caps," said Hodgson.
"He has 84 already and he is a wonderful player.
"His performances for Manchester United in recent weeks have been first-class. David Moyes is delighted with him.
"I don't know if it's right for me to say there's one player who's a jewel, but I would want to concur he is a very important player who will be taking a lot of responsibility tomorrow."
In his candid interview on Wednesday, Rooney confirmed he had become irritated at Sir Alex Ferguson's repeated demand for him to operate in central midfield.
Evidently, it is not a position Rooney feels he is suited to.
And Hodgson was never likely to ask him to operate in such a deep-lying role either.
"I try and pick players where they're at their best for their club sides," said Hodgson.
"I selected Rooney as a striker.
"It's different at club level, where you might have injuries but he's never played as an out and out in midfield for England."
There is no doubt Rooney and Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge are the men in form.
Yet their international experience together amounts to a mere 30 minutes against Republic of Ireland in May, which was cut short by an injury to the Liverpool man.
It does not seem Hodgson has any qualms about the idea, although he was careful not to say that is what he plans to do against Montenegro.
"They are two excellent modern-day front players who can perform all the roles you want," he said.
"They can receive the ball with their back to goal, can turn and run, beat people, can score with both feet and their head.
"The Republic of Ireland game was the first time I had the choice. For 20 minutes or so they did a very good job.
"But then Daniel got injured and we missed him for another few weeks.
"Now I have an opportunity to resurrect that partnership, although I am making no comment about whether I will."