The interim coach believes that, despite his main objective being to score goals, the £50 million striker is contributing to the side with more than just attacking threat
The Spaniard has yet to pick up a victory after three games in interim charge of the Blues and his side have only scored once so far under his stewardship.
But, despite a seemingly desperate lack of goals in the team, the 60-year-old highlighted the former Liverpool striker - who has started all three matches - as a key team player.
"Fernando is a great player and his team-mates know he's a great player," Benitez told reporters.
"He is doing a great job. He scored a lot of goals in training on Monday.
"It's not just scoring goals. We changed his position at corners and, if you analyse them, he was amazing. Two or three times he's cleared the ball and afterwards was doing man-to-man marking - because it's what he had to do. So he's helping the team to defend.
"As a striker, you like him to score goals but winning is the main thing. He is an important player for us."