Substitute Leon Best rescued a late point for Blackburn and denied Derby a winning start to the new Sky Bet Championship campaign following their 1-1 draw.
Best, on as an early replacement for the injured Ruben Rochina, guided a close-range volley past Lee Grant with two minutes remaining to cancel out Johnny Russell's debut goal from the penalty spot late in the first half.
In truth, it was arguably what Rovers deserved having created the better chances - particularly in the first half.
The game, one of six fixtures this weekend hand-picked by the Football League to mark its 125th anniversary celebrations, began with the visitors on the front foot.
Rochina spurned a good early opening after Tommy Spurr's left-wing cross fell to him inside the box but the Spaniard scuffed his shot wide.
Shorty afterwards Grant raced from his line to collect confidently at the feet of Jordan Rhodes when last season's leading scorer in the Championship was through on goal.
Blackburn continued to threaten and Alan Judge curled a right-footed shot inches wide of the far post from the left side of the box.
Derby escaped again midway through the first half when Rhodes' near-post header beat Grant but struck Craig Forsyth on the goal line.
A shoulder injury to Rochina saw the game stopped for almost five minutes while he received treatment.
Shorty after the contest resumed, after the forward had been carried from the field on a stretcher and replaced by Best, Derby took the lead.