The Three Lions were eliminated at the quarter-finals stage by Italy, with Ashley Cole and Ashley Young missing in a penalty shootout.
Ferdinand, who was overlooked for the squad by Hodgson on two occasions, feels younger players should have starred.
“If you take the youngsters to a competition like this, you should get them out there and see what they are made of,” he told The Sun.
“I am a fan of The Ox and I wanted to see more of him but in the end he finished up as a spectator. He was almost in the same position Theo Walcott was when he was picked for the 2006 World Cup.
“Phil Jones is one of the most adaptable players we have in our country and where was he?
“When we need to take the ball from midfield, run 40 yards with it and put the other team on the back foot, he is the man for the job.
“Instead, we stayed cautious and Jordan Henderson was used instead.
“That’s not a criticism of Jordan, he is a different player to Phil, but I thought it showed we were being too conservative,” he concluded.
By Gareth McKnight