Derby County played their league games in the Championship in the 2013-14 season, the fixtures were announced on 19 June 2013. The season began on 3 August 2013 and the regular season concluded on 3 May 2014. The season was extended because Derby competed in the play-offs which meant the season ended on 24 May 2014 in the 2013-14 play-off final.
Derby entered the League Cup in the first round, the draw for this was announced on 17 June 2014. They were drawn against Oldham away who they beat 1-0. In the second round they faced Brentford F.C., who they defeated 5-0. The team were out of the competition after losing 2-1 to Leicester City in the third round.
Derby entered the FA Cup at the third round stage. In the draw, which was made on, they were picked to play Premier League side Chelsea at home
Towards the end of May, Derby released their retained list where Roberts' departure was confirmed, but Ross Atkins, Saul Deeney, Conor Doyle and Michael Hoganson were all give new one-year deals, with Atkins and Doyle being made available for loan. Bryson's contract talks ended with the Scotsman signing a new three-year contract. Derby had bid for Dundee United striker Johnny Russell with a bid being rejected in late May, however an improved offer of £750,000 was accepted in early June, with the player joining Derby on a four-year contract.
A day before the fixture release day of 19 June, it was announced that Derby County would start their season with a match against Blackburn Rovers at Pride Park, as part of the Football League's 125th year anniversary. Derby took the lead through a 43rd-minute penalty form debutant Johnny Russell after a handball from Alex Marrow, Leon Best scored a late equaliser on 89 minutes. In the first League Cup match of the season against Oldham, Derby made six changes from the previous league match and booked their place into the 2nd round for the first time in five years through a Michael Jacobs 20th-minute goal. Two days later in the second round draw, Derby draw another League One side; Brentford at home with the game being played in late August. Derby wouldn't have to wait long for their first league, as they won at Brighton & Hove Albion 2–1 in a come from behind win with a Chris Martin double, trumping a Leonardo Ulloa opener. Out of favour defender Tom Naylor joined League Two newcomers Newport County on loan until early January 2014. Transfer listed striker Theo Robinson let the club to join Doncaster Rovers for a fee of £150,000. Meanwhile, young Norwegian goalkeeper Mats Mørch joined Burton Albion on a months loan. Derby lost 1–0 at home to rivals Leicester City after a Lee Grant own goal. In late August, it was reported that out of favour defender James O'Connor was training with Bristol City of League One with the view of a permanent transfer. Derby however, won consutive away games, after beating Yeovil Town 3–0 in the first meeting between the clubs through late first half goals from Johnny Russell and Craig Bryson, with Chris Martin rounding out the scoring on 58 minutes. Derby then scored a comfortable passage into the third round of the League Cup with goals from Chris Martin, Conor Sammon and Will Hughes in the first half and Sammon and Martin again in the second half to complete a 5–0 win. Derby then drew Leicester City away for the third round. However, the club's disappointing home league form continued with Derby's August programme finishing with a 3–0 defeat to Burnley through first half Danny Ings and Sam Vokes, with Johnny Russell having a penalty saved by Tom Heaton half way through the second half, with Jason Shackell finishing the scoring for the visitors on 74 minutes. Derby ended the month 14th in the table on 7 points. Hendrick missed the game with after picking up chipped ankle bone injury in the Yeovil, with a scan revealing damage worse than expected and was later ruled out for 12 weeks.
On transfer deadline day, two of Derby's transfer listed players left the club, with James O'Connor on loan deal until 13 January with Bristol City, with a view to a permanent transfer.Nathan Tyson joined Blackpool on a free transfer. After the international break, Derby returned to league action with a visit to Millwall and with a 5–1 win, Derby won their opening three away league games for the first time in 101 years and it was also the first time they won on road for three games in succession since February 2004, Craig Bryson scored his first career hattrick in the game which was also Derby's first league hattrick by a player since Paul Simpson in April 1996. Jake Buxton opening the scoring, with Shane Lowry being sent off for serious foul play at 2–0, Martyn Waghorn got Millwall's goal to make it 3–1, Mason Bennett scored his first league goal late on to complete the scoring. Derby's winning run on the road ended three days later after a 2–2 draw at basement side Bolton Wanderers, with Alex Baptiste and Chris Eagles first half goals being sandwiched by a Johnny Russell brace.