The England international was watched by Newcastle United as a teenager.
The Rams stopper, who has four caps for England, came through the ranks at Leeds United but did not join the Yorkshire club until late - at the age of 17 in 2002.
Previously he had been playing with Cleaton Moor Celtic and Workington as both a centre-back and a goalkeeper with Newcastle United watching him in action.
He told the Daily Mail this week:
"From what I can remember as a kid, the first ever training session we had with the local team, I turned up with my goalkeeping gloves. But I was always quite tall for my age so I used to play in goal for the team a couple of years above and play outfield for my age group.
"I was nine the first time I went, so I played outfield as a centre half for the Under 10s and in goal for the Under 12s. I always played a lot of football as a kid. Even when I was 14 or 15 I was playing for my local pub team. Always a few years above my age, which probably helped me.
"At one point I was a bit unsure what to do. I remember Newcastle came to watch me and they watched me in both positions, but I always felt comfortable in goal. It was where I wanted to be."
Carson of course went on to play with Liverpool, West Brom and Wigan before his summer move to Derby. He has since become the number one goalkeeper at the iPro and Newcastle could probably do with him at the moment.
Newcastle are without Tim Krul because of a long-term knee injury whilst Karl Darlow has only just recovered from his own injury. Carson would have proved a great option for Newcastle in their current state.