The 21-year-old has been hugely impressive for the Tigers since joining in 2014.
Derby are hoping to strengthen their own promotion push while also weakening a rival's challenge, after the Daily Record reported that the Rams are set to make a £7m bid for Hull City full-back Andrew Robertson.
The 21-year-old - who joined the Tigers for £3m in 2014 (via Record) - had been attracting attention from the Premier League, with the Record reporting that Arsenal, Chelsea, Everton and Swansea City were keeping an eye on his progress. But Paul Clement is clearly hoping to swoop in ahead of the queue to bag his signature.
The defender's attacking intent makes him a great weapon to have. As well as his defending, his crossing and passing ability has helped his current club bounce back positively from the disappointment of last season's relegation.
A move to the iPro Stadium would see the Scotland international leave one promotion contender for another, with Derby sitting third in the Championship, while Steve Bruce's men are one place higher, currently occupying the second automatic promotion spot.
And while the division's top five have been jostling for position for much of the campaign, there appears to be some daylight developing between Derby and fourth-place side Burnley, meaning that - while there is still a very long way to go - one of the two sides looking to have him in their squad come the end of the window will be favourites to go up to the top flight.
And with Middlesbrough creating their own daylight at the very top of the table - Aitor Karanka's men are five points clear of Hull - it appears that it will only be one of either Hull or Derby that will be going up automatically.
With the dreaded play-offs likely to be ahead for the other, Robertson knows that his decision during this window could be crucial in determining whether he is playing in the top flight next season.