Smith has joined the Rams on a season-long loan from Tottenham and the 22-year-old right-back sees no reason why Nigel Clough's team can not finish in the top sixcome May.
He told the club's official website: "I think moving here for a season will be brilliant for my career and from what I have seen and know about the team, we can challenge for the play-offs.
"I'm really excited by this opportunity to come to a massive club and play first-team football. I can't wait to get started.
"As soon as my agent told me that Derby wanted me, it was a simple decision. I knew I was going out on loan anyway this season but it was great news to hear Derby wanted me."
"There was interest from other clubs but coming here was my first choice."