Former Brentford and Rangers boss Mark Warburton will take charge of Forest for the first time and it will be interesting to see how he lines up his team against Derby, who will have Gary Rowett in charge.
Warburton will not be able to call on forward Jamie Ward as he misses out against his old club through suspension.
The versatile Chris Cohen could be brought back into the Forest squad but defenders Matt Mills (groin) and Jack Hobbs (foot) may remain on the sidelines.
Former Burton and Birmingham boss Rowett, who used to play for Derby between 1995 and 1998, is boosted by the return of Richard Keogh and Bradley Johnson.
Defender Keogh has missed the last four games with a calf injury while midfielder Johnson sat out the defeat at Brighton last week after picking up a knock in training.
However, Cyrus Christie is a slight concern for Rowett and the right-back will be assessed on Friday in training.
Centre-half Jason Shackell and forward Nick Blackman remain out of action with back and knee problems respectively.