Meanwhile, the Rams play host to the Championship promotion contenders sitting in 13th position, nine points adrift of the playoffs.
With a number of their nearest rivals having failed to find any consistency in recent weeks, Fulham had the opportunity to move into the top two of the Championship standings, keeping in close proximity to leaders West Bromwich Albion.
However, a 1-1 draw at Millwall was followed by a hugely disappointing 3-0 home defeat to Barnsley - a result which left Scott Parker to acknowledge that his side had failed to meet their previous standards.
Although the Cottagers sit just three points adrift of Leeds, there is the same margin between the West Londoners and Bristol City in seventh, putting Parker and his squad in a position where they are looking over their shoulders.
A positive result in the East Midlands will change their perspective, but Fulham need to improve in the final third with just nine goals coming in as many matches.
Despite Aleksandar Mitrovic having 21 strikes to his name, just seven of his teammates have chipped in with contributions of their own since the beginning of August.
As far as Derby are concerned, their goal return has improved significantly since the arrival of Wayne Rooney, with 16 being netted in their last half-a-dozen outings in all competitions.
That has been undermined by 11 being shipped at the other end, leaving head coach Philip Cocu to try to restore some balance to a team which had showed signs of progression.
At a time when the club have reached the FA Cup fifth round, a run of five wins from seven had been recorded at the second tier before their failure to see off either Bristol City or Huddersfield Town.
While their earlier momentum has disappeared, Friday's game represents a chance to remain active in the race for the top six, a target which can still be achieved if they can get at least six points on the board from three fixtures before the showdown with Manchester United in the FA Cup.
Derby County Championship form: WLWWLD
Derby County form (all competitions): LWWWLD
Fulham Championship form: WDWWDL
Fulham form (all competitions): DLWWDL
Despite the frustrating draw with Huddersfield last time out, Cocu is unlikely to make many changes to his Derby starting lineup.
Fulham boss Parker is expected to make several alterations, however, and a change between the sticks is a possibility given Marek Rodak's display against Barnsley.
Derby County possible starting lineup:
Roos; Bogle, Davies, Clarke, Forsyth; Holmes, Bird, Rooney, Lawrence; Waghorn, Martin
Fulham possible starting lineup:
Bettinelli; Odoi, Hector, Ream, Bryan; Cairney, Arter, Onomah; Decordova-Reid, Mitrovic, Cavaleiro
We say: Derby County 1-1 Fulham
With both teams having failed to win any of the last two games, we feel that this will be a closely-fought contest. Although each side contains proven goalscorers, this could turn out to be a low-scoring draw.