Robbie Savage, Benni McCarthy and Morten Gamst Pedersen have not started any of Rovers' last three matches, and yet they have all been won.
Hughes said: "We're a side that's playing good football and everybody wants to play and be part of it.
"But that's when they have to be professional, keep their head down and wait for their opportunity, and those opportunities will come.
"It's part and parcel of being of footballer. It's unrealistic in this day and age to think you can play every single match because the intensity of the games doesn't allow you to do that.
"So I have to use the squad. Even without European football it is still going to be a demanding season, and we hope to have decent runs in the other cup competitions as well.
"If players come in who have waited for their chance, and then do okay and nothing to go back out, then I will stick with them.
"But there will be situations where I need to freshen things up, and they hopefully understand that now."