Having struggled in the early part of the season, Steve McClaren’s men appear to be hitting form at a time when every other club in the top six is struggling for results, and, with five very winnable games coming up before the visit to the Hornets in mid-November, Derby could well and truly cement themselves as real promotion contenders before the close of 2014.
In the process of defeating Blackpool, the Midlands side kept their sixth consecutive clean sheet across all competitions - with five in the Championship - equalling the club record set in April 1912, when club legend Steve Bloomer was leading the side out.
They have kept seven clean sheets in the league this season, the highest in the division, and their tally of 10 goals conceded is the lowest in the Championship. Having fallen down on their defensive performances last season, the club are well on the way to achieving automatic promotion if they continue to defend in the manner that they have been for the opening stages of the current campaign. At this stage of last season, the Rams had conceded 10 more goals than they have currently, and they look on course to match the strong defensive performances of Leicester and Burnley last season - who conceded 43 and 37 goals respectively.
The win also extended Derby’s unbeaten run to 12 matches in all competitions - and they are certainly the form team in the division.